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Ebola: Through the Eyes of the People Paperback – December 1, 2001

4.8 out of 5 stars 7 ratings

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"Agnes's Place" by Marit Larsen
Agnes knows she is at home before she even opens her eyes in the morning. | Learn more

Editorial Reviews


Author had a good background of the country of Africa and the way of the people. -- Foreword Book of the Year Award Judge, 2003

Eloquent, gripping, and beautiful account of the real doctors, nurses, and victims who lived and died during that harrowing nightmare. -- Richard Preston, author of "The Hot Zone"

I was riveted all the way to the end. -- Foreword Book ot the Year Award Judge, 2003

This book opened my awareness to a part of history I knew little about. -- Foreword Book of the Year Award Judge, 2003

From the Publisher

Winner of Foreword Magazine's Book of the Year Gold Award for 2002 -- Historical Fiction ForeWord’s Book of the Year program has become one of the most prestigious honors for university and independent presses and their authors. Awards were announced on May 30th, 2003 at Book Expo America.

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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Meadowlark Springs Productions Llc; 1st edition (December 1, 2001)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 396 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0970337116
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0970337115
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.3 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.5 x 1 x 8.5 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.8 out of 5 stars 7 ratings

About the author

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William T. Close (1924-2009) was educated in England, France, and the United States. During the Second World War, he served as a troop carrier pilot in Europe. Dr. Close was a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians. In May 2001, he received an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from the University of Utah. Before his death in early 2009, he was a village doc in Big Piney, Wyoming, and a published author.

Prior to settling in Wyoming, he spent 16 years in Africa, arriving in the Congo just before independence and just in time for the mutinies, coup d'états, and rebellions that marked the history of that country. For the first year, he was responsible for surgery as one of only three doctors in the capital city's 2,000-bed hospital. He became the personal physician to the president and chief doctor for the Congolese Army. In 1967, he took over the management of the general hospital.

Beyond the Storm details Dr. Close's extraordinary experiences during the uncontrollable human storms that crashed repeatedly in the Congo after independence. In July of 1960 chaos erupted when Belgium turned over power to Patrice Lumumba, the first elected prime minister, but kept the keys to the nation's prodigious mineral wealth. Two men, Colonel Joseph Désiré Mobutu, the newly appointed army chief of staff, and William T. Close, M.D., volunteer surgeon in the general hospital, met, and their lives became intertwined during the next sixteen years.

In 1976, during the first Ebola fever outbreak in the Congo, he supervised logistics for the international team of scientists dealing with the epidemic. In 1995, he acted as a liaison between the Centers for Disease Control, the Zairian/Congolese government and many concerned international organizations during a renewed epidemic of Ebola. Between 1994 and 1996, he was in the Congo three times to rebuild the nine major operating rooms and emergency services in the general hospital, which had fallen into total disrepair. It was during two of those visits that Dr. Close saw his old boss, President Mobutu -- the last visit coming a few weeks before Mobutu fled the country and died of cancer in Morocco.

Dr. Close is the author of the bestseller Ebola: Through the Eyes of the People dealing with the people and events involved in the first epidemic. A Doctor's Life: Unique Stories is a collection of cameos illustrating the human aspect of medicine in New York, Africa, and the Rocky Mountains. His daughter, Glenn Close, wrote the foreword. Subversion of Trust, Dr. Close's first novel, deals with the conflict between an aggressive for-profit HMO that has taken over a regional medical center in the Rocky Mountains and the rural practices that must be acquired in order to achieve financial rewards for the managed care company's stockholders.

Through his practice, example, teaching and writing Dr. Close exemplified a professional ideal that combines scientific excellence with compassionate care. His continued contributions to the profession included mentorship, lectures, radio interviews and writings that tug at the hearts of patients, doctors and nurses caught up in the frenetic pace of the medical industry. His writings continue to be an inspiration to young people who are entering the profession at a time when patient centered care needs to be reemphasized.

For more information on the work of Dr. William T. Close, please check out the website:

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