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Has polio affected your family? Lisa's story

Thanks to the vaccine, polio has been eliminated in the U.S. for over 30 years. But the debilitating effects of polio still impact so many individuals and families.


Here is Lisa's story:

My father, Harry J. Weigandt, was born in 1928 and developed polio as a young child. He was born in Davenport, Iowa and was treated at the University of Iowa. The polio really impacted his legs. He had to relearn to walk and wear leg braces. He was treated poorly in school by the other students who teased and bullied him.

Growing up, I watched my father go to work everyday at JI Case in Bettendorf.  When he came home, his legs would ache and cramp up. But he never complained and he provided well for his family. He worked at JI Case for 30 years, until he had to retire on disability. My father believed in vaccinations so his children would not get this horrible disease.

During the later years of his life, my father developed severe arthritis in his legs, to where walking was a challenge. My father died in January 2001 at the age of 72. The doctors believe my father's body just wore out early, due to having polio. 

 

We have learned since his death, there were things he could have done that may have extended his life: water therapy, trying to eliminate stress, etc.

My siblings and I are proud of our father for his fortitude to live life to the fullest, even though he was in pain most of his life. I hope someday this disease does not exist. With today's technology, no one should ever get this disease.

May God bless your journey, and we will be praying for you, and watching you on Facebook. God speed! Lisa Weigandt

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