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There is, indeed, it is to be apprehended, more than a mere possibility of a recurrence. The fact that influenza is sweeping at the present time through other countries renders it distinctly improbable that New Zealand will escape a second visitation. The history of 1918 warns us that there can be no certainty of immunity from the ravages of the disease.
But the adoption of timely action of a precautionary character may have the effect of sensibly mitigating the severity of the trouble. For its guidance in this matter the community is entitled to look to the Public Health Department.
The department did not cover itself with glory during the unforgettable months of October and November, 1918, but its experience at that time cannot have been lost upon it and it may be confidently hoped that it will not fail for a second time to rise to the full measure of its responsibilities.
It will be observed that the members of the local division of the British Medical Association, who conferred yesterday with officials of the Public Health Department on the subject, emphasised the need for the observance of such a precaution as the avoidance of large gatherings within doors as a means of checking a spread of the influenza that is locally prevalent.
University 50th celebrations
The opening ceremony in the celebrations of the Jubilee of the University of Otago drew a large crowd to First Church at 11 a.m. yesterday. An impressive gathering of University officials, professors and graduates from many centres of learning met and formed themselves into a procession.
Punctually the procession entered by the left aisle, the congregation standing while the University representatives filed into the centre seats reserved for them. The rich hues of the many coloured academic hoods and robes combined to make a striking and dignified spectacle, unique in its extent, even in this city, where learning is held in such high esteem.
The tragic incident which marked yesterday’s inaugural ceremonial in connection with the University Jubilee celebrations cannot but leave a deep impression on the mind of the community.
The circumstances in which Dr Gilray, while taking part in the service at First Church, was called upon to answer that final summons which no man may disregard, have thrown his death into a stronger light than he ever coveted in life.
— ODT, 4.2.1920.
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