All doctors of the planet know the female doctor Leila Denmark. Leila got a pediatric diploma in 1918 and had been practicing for over 70 years, saving hundreds of children’s lives. Her greatest merit is the fight against whooping cough. This disease was considered incurable at that time.
Leila was one of the few centenarians and the only celebrity in history who lived to be 114 years old. At the time of her death, she was 4th in the list of oldest living people. As of 2012, she was also one of the hundred oldest people who have ever lived, whose birth and death dates are precisely known. In 2001, the surname Denmark appeared in the Guinness Book of Records, where she was named the oldest practicing physician. By that time, Leila Denmark was one hundred and three years old.
Leila Denmark’s Early Life and Career
Leila Denmark was born in Portal, Georgia, the third of 12 children in a farmer’s family. Denmark attended Tift College in Forsyth, Georgia, where she received teacher education but decided to go to medical school after her fiancé, John E. Denmark, was sent to an island Java to Indonesia, the United States Department of State, and where it was not allowed to take wives.
At the point when Leila was 18, she wasn’t permitted to vote, as women were not allowed to vote in 1916, that is why she experienced the Women’s Suffrage Movement.
Leila Denmark was the only female graduate of 1918 Georgia Medical College.
Dr. Denmark absolutely loved practicing medicine, connecting with others, and treating little patients. She was so passionate about these concepts that she completely modeled her private practice on it.
Denmark conducted research from the 1930s, and especially from 1933 to 1944 in the diagnosis, treatment, and immunization of whooping cough, then frequently fatal to children. Denmark is credited as co-developer of pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine, with support from Eli Lilly and Company, and Emory University. For this, she was awarded the Fisher Prize in 1935. Thanks to the developed vaccine, she was also able to cure her daughter, Mary Alice (born in 1930), the production of the vaccine against pertussis was started. Dr. Denmark described the effectiveness of the research in the journal American Journal of Diseases of Children (Studies in Whooping Cough: Diagnosis and Immunization, 1936; Whooping Cough Vaccine, 1942).
The children’s doctor began her practice in 1931 in Atlanta, where Leila worked first at Grady’s Hospital, and then at Egleston Children’s Hospital. In 1945 she moved to Sandy Springs, where she continued her pediatric practice.
At the age of 87, Leila Denmark wanted to retire and moved to Alpfaretta, but ultimately continued to work as a doctor in Sandy Springs.
In 1971, she published a book entitled “Every Child Should Have A Chance”, later reprinted several times. In the book, Dr. Denmark outlined her philosophy of attitude towards children. Among other things, she was one of the first doctors to point out the dangers of smoking in the presence of children.
She also sharply criticized the use of drugs, the use of coffee and alcohol by pregnant women. L. Denmark believed that drinking cow’s milk does not benefit children, and instead of drinking juices, she recommended eating vegetables.
The doctor herself drank only clean water all her life, carefully monitored hygiene and stayed active in sports. Those were the core things she taught her little patients and their parents to stay healthy and happy.
Leila Denmark’s Accomplishments and Legacy
Leyla Denmark is the owner of numerous awards and titles. In 2000, she received the title of Honorary Doctor of Emory University in Atlanta, and in 1953 – the title of “Woman of the Year” in Atlanta.
After retiring, Leyla Denmark lived in Alpharetta, Georgia, and at the age of 103, she moved to Athens, Georgia, with her daughter Mary Hutcherson. On February 1, 2008, Leyla Denmark celebrated her 110th birthday; in the fall of that year, her health deteriorated, although Denmark later recovered. She was one of the few supercentenarians notable for something other than their longevity.
A new Forsyth County, Georgia high school constructed 2016-2018 is located near her former home and is named after Dr. Denmark. This amazing woman died on April 1, 2012 in Athens, Georgia at the age of 114 years and 2 months.
In the end, I would like to mention several of Leila’s quotes that can be much-needed for parents:
- Never raise your hand or your voice to a child.
- Anything you have to do is work and anything you love to do is play.
- “Let’s do” is easier than do.
- Children are not getting parental guidance and it’s wrecking this nation.
- A sense of humor is very important for longevity.
- Don’t abuse your body with junk food.
Jessica is a passionate health blogger who writes on topics of health issues, motivation, career, and self-development. She constantly tries to learn something new and share this experience on various websites.