Saturday, October 31, 2009

Strong Will

A MELBOURNE woman who spent more than 60 years in an iron lung to treat polio has died at the age of 83.

A Yooralla spokeswoman confirmed today that June Middleton died at her Thornbury nursing home on Friday morning.

Ms Middleton, who was struck down with polio at 22, marked 60 years in the iron lung on April 5 this year.

She celebrated the milestone with friends and her dog, Angel, by her side at her home at Yooralla's Ventilator Accommodation Support Service (VASS) in Thornbury, in Melbourne's north.

At the time, she described life in an iron lung in matter-of-fact terms.

"It's hard to explain but it's what you gotta do, make the most of it, get over the obstacles on the way,'' she said.

Ms Middleton entered the Guinness World Book of Records in 2006 as the person who has spent the longest time in an iron lung.

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