Martha Mason, who was one of our neighbors while we lived in Lattimore, has recently passed away. She was the only person in the Southeastern USA that still lived in an iron lung and a world-record holder, having survived in the iron lung for 60 years.
She had been in the machine since she was 11 because of polio. While in it, she graduated from high school and went to college – all from inside the 800-pound machine. She graduated from Wake Forest University with Phi Beta Kappa honors and wrote her memoirs, “Breath, Life in the Rhythm of an Iron Lung”, using a voice-activated computer.
Throughout her whole life, she worked with Rotary to eradicate polio and how to live above the disease – the goal of her life!