A 104-year-old World War II veteran and the Spanish Flu pandemic survivor recently celebrated both his birthday and recovery from the coronavirus.
Bill Lapschies from Oregon, U.S, celebrated his 104th birthday a few days after he was discharged from the hospital after three weeks.
The Oregon man, who is believed to be the world’s oldest coronavirus survivor, was one of the two residents who tested positive for the COVID-19 at the Edward C. Allworth Veterans’ Home on March 11, after displaying symptoms.
Lapschies was born in Salem in 1916 and survived the Spanish Flu pandemic, World War II and now defeated the coronavirus.
When Lapschies was asked how he recovered, the survivor replied: “It just went away. Sit out here and you can get rid of anything.”
On Wednesday, his family visited the care home in Lebanon, Oregon to celebrate his birthday and recovery from the coronavirus carrying cake and balloons.
The staff brought out the veteran in a wheelchair to celebrate his birthday with his family, who maintained a social distance.
According to local reports, Lapschies was the oldest patient among 15 senior residents with the coronavirus in the care home where he stayed.
Confirmed U.S. coronavirus cases have surged to more than 205,000, with 4,500 deaths.
The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death.
After first appearing in Wuhan, China, last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to at least 180 countries and territories, according to data compiled by U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.
The data shows over 860,000 cases have been reported worldwide since last December, with the death toll over 42,000 and more than 178,000 recoveries.