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Fox News contributor and Fox Nation host Tammy Bruce took a moment to recognize the inspiring story of a previously little-known doctor who is now front and center during the White House coronavirus task force news conference on a nearly daily basis.
Prior to that, she was recognized as a world-renowned medical expert who had worked extensively in the global fight against HIV/AIDS — both as the State Department’s U.S. global AIDS coordinator and as the U.S. special representative for global health diplomacy.
During a March 25 news conference, Birx told a touching personal story to illustrate why “social distancing” is so important during the coronavirus outbreak.
“My grandmother for 88 years lived with the fact that she was the one, at age 11, who brought home flu to her mother, named Leah, for which I am named,” recounted Birx.
“Her mother had just delivered and her mother succumbed to the great 1918 flu. She never forgot that she was the child that was in school that innocently brought that flu home. This is why we keep saying to every American: You have a role to protect each and every person that you interact with.”
“I can tell you my grandmother lived with that for 88 years,” she continued. “This is not a theoretic. This is a reality. You can see the number of deaths that are occurring. We all have a role in preventing them that moved all of us.”
Bruce observed that Birx’s remarks were significant for several reasons.
“It was obviously very personal and it was right on the mark when it came to why they’re asking us to do the social distancing, why what we’re doing is so important,” noted Bruce.
“But what struck me was this woman, who is now one of our foremost research scientists, has a remarkable history,” Bruce continued. “This is what is really the epitome of the American story of the American Dream in a way.”
“Here you have the grandmother unknowingly as it was, a kid bringing back the Spanish flu to her mother, who succumbs, who has just given birth. She obviously changes everyone’s lives. Something that was not her fault; was no one’s fault.”
“And yet here we have a couple generations later… the great-granddaughter devoting her life and becoming one of the world’s foremost research scientists on these issues.”
“It is a story of resilience. It’s a story of overcoming dynamics,” Bruce continued. “We can do better and we can do more. And that’s the story today.”
“Now we’ve learned about the kinds of people who make this country strong and better and great. And that’s also something to be grateful for,” Bruce concluded.
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Fox News’ Brie Stimson contributed to this report.