Genean Hixon, whose breakthrough treatment with penicillin at age 12 during World War II led to modern medical practices, died March 1 two days short of her 83rd birthday, the Denver Post reported.
Hixon died of liver cancer, which was diagnosed in December.
Hixon was hospitalized on July 24, 1943, with severe osteomyelitis — a bone disease that at the time was seemingly incurable and potentially fatal. She became one of the first American civilians to be treated with a "mysterious miracle drug" – known now as penicillin -- and the Denver Post reported on her treatment in a series of articles.
Hixon’s obit said that she received fan mail and, once, a bouquet of roses from an unknown soldier during the penicillin treatment, “which drew hopeful eyes from around the globe.”
She is survived by her husband, four children, 11 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.