Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID):
Hope Through Research

by Georgiann Potts

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Seated in the center of the photograph is  Dr. Martha Jane Upshaw, Director of Continuing Education at NLU.  On her lap is John Graydon Lewis, II.   Standing beside her are Ainsley Scott Anderson and Mark Kent Anderson, Jr.   Behind Dr. Upshaw are (left to right) Jason Aaron Lewis, Ainsley Upshaw Lewis, Allison Upshaw, Rosemary Upshaw Anderson and Mark Anderson. 

When high school sweethearts Elton Jefferson Upshaw, Jr., and Martha Jane Burns married in 1961, they shared the hopes and dreams for a happy life that many other couples share.  They had promising careers, a new home, and after a time, a new baby.  When Elton Jefferson Upshaw III arrived, he was the picture of health.   Little did his parents know that an unknown killer had already doomed the infant, and was to change their lives forever.  Only through courage and relentless research spanning three generations did Dr. Martha Upshaw and her family finally learn the truth, overcome the pain, and look to the future once again with hope. 

This article originally appeared in the Spring/Summer issue of Res Scholaris, the academic journal for the faculty at Northeast Louisiana University.  Specific permission is granted for this electronically - produced reprint only for general informational purposes.  No part of this article may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means including information storage and retrieval systems without permission in writing from the editors.  Offprints of this article are available.  Requests should be directed to Georgiann Potts either at or at the Northeast Louisiana University Office of Public Affairs/ 700 University Avenue/ Monroe, LA 71209. 


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