Eman’s emails arrive hours ahead of the news here. He wrote on Sunday, August 17:
“An Ebola quarantine site was attacked and looted. News is that most of the patients have escaped. This is going to put more fear into the population. All this because people are denying the virus. More people might get exposed. I’m so weak I can’t wake up this morning. Its 6:00 pm and I am still in bed listening to the news. All this happened in a very populated area called West Point. Got pain all over my body. Keep me in your meditations.”
Emmanuel is a medical student in Liberia whom my husband and I have been supporting since he contacted me after reading my human genetics textbook in 2007. Until the fever hit him last weekend, he dedicated himself to “sensitization,” educating the public about how to stay safe. But now he’s too sick and weak to venture out.
His email from Monday, August 18, said only “Need help!”
Ricki Lewis is the author of "The Forever Fix: Gene Therapy and the Boy Who Saved It," St. Martin's Press, March 2012. To read more blogs from the author, please visit her site at http://www.rickilewis.com.