Survive the dictatorship of Franco and the coronavirus

Survivre à la dictature de Franco et au coronavirus

ROUYN-NORANDA | A 73-year old woman has defeated the COVID-19 some 50 years after having fled the Spanish dictatorship. The disease has nothing removed to the passion of this artist who has never feared death.

“Ever the idea of death to me has crossed the mind “, expresses Marta Saenz de la Calzada, who lives in Rouyn-Noranda since 1969.

The septuagenarian has been contaminated in the march 18, during a flight, which linked Madrid to Toronto.

“I am well, and I came back here sick “, she says.

The loss of appetite, fever, “the eyes at the height of the nape of the neck, and a head appalling” were the main symptoms that she has endured.

“I don toussais not and I had no difficulty breathing. I’ve never had need of oxygen “, she says.

When she speaks about her experience, Marta Saenz de la Calzada goes on to extol the work of the staff of the health.

“I have been supported with human warmth. An extraordinary team ! I’ll never tell enough ! “repeated the survivor, who laments, however, that it is called” our guardian angels “.

“It is very convenient to name them like that, but they are human beings, she says. They have their worries and their families ! “

During his visit to the hospital, she could not help but ask a nurse if this pandemic frightened her. “It is not necessary to think of it,” he has t-to be told there.

Not to fear

Back on her feet, Marta Saenz de la Calzada has now enough energy to denounce the climate of fear that is installed with the pandemic, particularly among the elderly.

“It is mind-blowing ! It is the terror, ” said she. I have friends who do not leave their homes, because they are afraid. As if the virus was floating and waiting for us. “


It takes a lot to frighten Marta Saenz de la Calzada, who comes from a Spanish family that opposed openly to the dictatorship of general Francisco Franco that lasted from 1939 to 1975.

“My parents never hid the fact that they were antifranquistes “, she recalls.

Before his birth, his maternal grandfather, who was a lawyer, was killed in 1936 for having defended a union leader in 1934. The assassination was organized by phalangistes who had supported the coup of Franco.

Three of his uncles were also forced into exile because of their ideas of the left, not to mention that her ex-husband has been imprisoned after a student protest in which she was participating.

“My parents have taught me not to be afraid. Therefore, with the disease, it was the same thing. “

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