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Sharon Combs Urges Parents to Protect Their Kids Against Measels

When 85-year-old Sharon Combs sees parents pushing strollers, she stops them and urges them to get the MMR vaccine, the vaccine that prevents against measles, as well as mumps and rubella. Combs’ son, Jeffrey, contracted Measles when he was six months old, before the vaccine had been introduced. Soon thereafter he experienced very high temperatures, auditory nerve damage, became deaf and experienced many other developmental delays.

But that wasn’t the worst of it. “The Measles made him sick for years,” she said, and he died at the young age of 30. He died as the result of kidney failure, after experiencing two unsuccessful kidney transplants. “His doctor told me his body had aged as an 80-year-old body would have," she said.

Combs has been advocating for the Measles vaccine for the last 65 years but feels it’s even more important right now, with the recent Measles outbreak, to get the message across. “If just one child gets spared this mess, it’s worth it to me. That’s why I tell parents to get their kids the shots they need,” Combs says.