Babe Ruth fell victim to the 1918 Spanish Flu twice. On May 19, 1918 Babe and wife Helen spent the day in the sun at Revere Beach, north of Boston. It was a happy day of eating picnic sandwiches, drinking beer and swimming on a full stomach. That night Babe developed a terrible fever of 104, complaining of aches, chills, and a painful throat. Along with millions of Americans that Spring, he had caught the flu. Babe showed up at Fenway the next day expecting to play but was wisely sent home. His symptoms worsened due to his doctor’s mistreatment of his throat and he wound up in Massachusetts General for several days. Rumors spread that Babe was on his deathbed. He recovered and was well enough to hit 11 home runs in May and June. In October, Babe was back home in Baltimore only to once again contract the Spanish Flu which he defeated with less incident than his case from earlier in the year.

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