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Today we highlight the story of one extraordinary life cut short by COVID-19: That of 97-year-old Edward Anderson.
“Throughout his march across Germany as a prisoner of war, Edward Anderson kept a secret diary,” reports WPR’s Rob Mentzer. “He recorded places, dates and conditions he and other U.S. Army troops faced. He had to keep it secret from the Nazi guards, or risk being shot.”
The quiet Barron County dairy farmer died last month, 48 hours after contracting COVID-19, Mentzer reports.
Sandra Cherney, his daughter, told Mentzer that she didn’t want her father to be remembered as a victim of the disease, but she felt cheated out of the extra time she would have otherwise spent with him.
The death makes her “want to get to the top of the cell phone towers (in Wisconsin) and say, ‘Listen, people! This is serious,” she said.
Mentzer’s story is part of a WPR/Wisconsin Life series — copublished by Wisconsin Watch — detailing the lives of some of the 4,000-plus Wisconsinites killed by COVID-19. Others include a loving grandmother; a group of nuns at a convent; a coach and avid University of Wisconsin-Badgers fan; and a champion for veterans.
The story comes on a momentous day in the pandemic; Wisconsin on Monday began the months-long process of vaccinating residents against COVID-19, beginning with health care workers.
UW Health receives first COVID-19 vaccine shipment, set to begin vaccinating employees this afternoon — Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
COVID-19 vaccine updates: Respiratory therapist is first vaccine recipient in Wisconsin — Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Here’s why vaccinated people still need to wear a mask — The New York Times
Wisconsin surpasses 4,000 reported COVID-19 deaths — Wisconsin State Journal
Audit: DWD largely responsible for delays when processing unemployment claims — Wisconsin State Journal
Portage hospital: Healthcare workers exhausted, need encouragement — Portage Daily Register
Data to note
WisContext offers these visualizations of Wisconsin COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations and deaths.
Calculate your exposure risk
In Wisconsin, even small gatherings can carry a big risk of exposure to the coronavirus, according to a nationwide tool that estimates the danger by the size of gathering and county in which it is held. Data scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology and Stanford University developed the tool, which you can find here.
People helping others and showing resilience during this time of anxiety. Send suggestions by tagging us on social media — @wisconsinwatch — or emailing us: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Even while she was dying of coronavirus, a dedicated volunteer and former nurse was ‘focused on everyone else’ — Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
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The nonprofit Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism (wisconsinwatch.org) collaborates with Wisconsin Public Radio, PBS Wisconsin, other news media and the UW-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication. All works created, published, posted or disseminated by the Center do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of UW-Madison or any of its affiliates.