He’s fought COVID-19 for months. Can he ever really beat it?

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Larry Brown had been on a ventilator for 37 days. Nurses periodically turned the 45-year-old former Indiana State football player onto his stomach to help him breathe. Brown’s lungs were filling with fluid, and doctors didn’t expect him to last.

As visitors weren’t allowed in the intensive care unit, a nurse placed a phone next to his ear.

“Thank you for fighting so hard, Larry,” his sister-in-law, Ellie Brown, told him. She was careful not to say goodbye. That might scare him.

Like millions of COVID-19 cases, Brown’s had started with minor symptoms. When he fell ill in mid-March, people in the U.S. were becoming familiar with the novel coronavirus. Businesses were starting to shutter — but only until the country could flatten the curve, nearly everyone thought. And most cases weren’t severe, officials said.

Yet Brown spiraled quickly. His family feared they’d lose him but wouldn’t

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Former coal boss Robert Murray, who fought coal-dust standards, files for black lung benefits

Former mining company chief Robert Murray, who bitterly fought federal coal-dust regulations, has filed an application with the U.S. Department of Labor for black lung benefits, according to a report from West Virginia Public Broadcasting and Ohio Valley ReSource.

Miners operate a continuous miner machine [Source: Utah Geological Survey]

Murray, now 80-years-old, was the former head of Murray Energy, the largest privately owned undergrounding mining company in the United States. The company went bankrupt in 2019. It has since restructured under the name American Consolidated Natural Resources. The company operates mines in Alabama, Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia and Utah.

According to the report, Murray says that he worked daily in coalmines for 17 years and went underground at least weekly until he was 75. He states that he is now on oxygen and “near death.”

“During my 63 years working in underground coal mines, I worked 16 years every day

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