Subject: Sojourn At Cresson
I had just graduated from high school, started a terrific job in Pittsburgh at the railroad station payroll
department. This was a big thing, for I was from a very small town and landing a job in Pittsburgh meant a great deal!
I was only there a very short time, when it was discovered I had contracted TB. My older sister and father had already
spent time in Cresson. I was also recently engaged to a wonderful pre-med student. So, as you say, all my "ducks
were lined up and in order"! Then catastrophe, I wasn't quite ready for this.
But I was very lucky, mine was in the very early stages. It seemed like the whole place was full
of "old" people. But I met one very lovely lady who took me under her wing. I used to cry at night in my bed,
during the day in the restroom. She always seemed to find me and was able to
console me that this too shall pass! I don't believe I will ever forget her, nor do I wish to. I spent 18 months
in Cresson, very difficult, but alas, very necessary. Thank God there was such
a place for "the cure".
I also was very fortunate for I had a wonderful fiancÚ. He was there for me and we have now been
married fifty-four years. We have four children: two are physicians, one a registered nurse and the other a "domesticated
engineer"! We also have thirteen grandchildren. So, you see, the Good Lord has been very good to me and mine.
It is strange how your small article in our local paper brought back such a flood of memories. My
sister and my father are both now gone. They too were cured in Cresson. Come to think of it, I had an Uncle who
also spent some time there. Does it have to run in families? I can remember going to family reunions and having
our family sit apart from the rest of the families with our own separate food that no one else wished to share. This
was a very hard time for me (I was still young, my father had contracted TB while
I was still in high school).
It still amazes me, though, that TB is treated in the home now. It still scares me!