Bob Blackbird: Wisconsin’s First COVID-19 Fatality

Because Wisconsin has unfortunately reached the 1,000+ COVID-19 fatalities, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel published a few obituaries of those Wisconsinites that have been lost.

Here is their obit for our very first loss: Bob Blackbird.

The blockade of Berlin and subsequent airlift was one of the opening salvos of the Cold War, and for a young orphan from a small town in Wisconsin, it was an eye-opening experience that changed his life.

Bob Blackbird enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1949 and was sent to Germany to work as a plane mechanic at Celle Air Base, a critical location because it was the closest large airfield to Berlin. Planes could take off loaded with lifesaving food, coal, medicine and other cargo every few minutes.

Keeping those planes in operation was an important and busy job….

Blackbird died at the age of 91 on March 19 of coronavirus. He was the first COVID-19 death in Wisconsin.

emphasis mine

I want to thank the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel for taking his effort. We all know 1,000 is far more deaths than were necessary…it seems like a big number…although only a minor component of the 165,000 Americans who have died…but the number doesn’t have real meaning until we see the faces and hear from the grieving family members and their friends and their community…and we see or feel the impact their lives have had on our world. And what we have lost in knowledge and experience because of official negligence.

Please take a few moments to read the rest of Mr. Blackbird’s obit and some of the others as well. These numbers aren’t just data…real people are dying…our friends and neighbors are dying.


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