105-year-old Raleigh woman remembers her father being sick during 1918 flu amid current COVID-19 pandemic

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- Gerri Harris is grateful.

"I can get up, put my feet on the floor and have my breakfast and get dressed every day," the 105-year-old said. "That's a blessing."

She spoke about her memories of the 1918 influenza and reflected on what she's seeing with the current pandemic.


Gerri was just 4 years old in 1918.

She was living on her family's farm in the Pittsboro area and recalls her father getting very sick then.

"He was really, really sick in bed," she said from her Raleigh home. "We got over it but even then nobody would come in to cook or clean or anything like that."

She said now she's less concerned about herself as a member of the vulnerable population and more so about everyone else.

"People should take care of themselves just like you're wearing a mask," she told Josh Chapin. "We could curb this stuff if people would just do what the president and what our governor tell us to do."

Gerri's older brother was one of the first casualties in Pearl Harbor. Another brother was on a ship where they did the original atomic bomb testing.

She turns 106 in October.
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