Jim shares what happened to Walt and his family in 1918.
Walt Disney almost died at the age of 16 from a H1N1 influenza virus pandemic in 1918 that infected over 500 million people and killed somewhere between 50 million-100 million people.
One of the few regions not to be adversely affected was China, where the inhabitants had acquired an immunity to the disease because of a respiratory illness that struck northern China in November 1917.
Speculation is that the virus was likely to have come from China, mutated in the United States and then was transmitted overseas by the Allied soldiers and sailors. The first known American case was a soldier complaining about a cold while a mess cook at Ft. Riley, Kansas. After five weeks, 1,127 soldiers at Fort Riley had been stricken with this so-called Spanish flu, and 46 of them had died.