Starvation Heights

The tiny fishing village of Olalla, Washington was home to only a few dozen families when Dr. Linda Hazzard came to town.

It was the dawn of the 20th century.

The big city doctor was building her own private hospital and a circle of little cottages where her patients could live while they were getting treatments.

50 miles outside Seattle, along the waters of Puget Sound, it was an idyllic spot for her Institute of Natural Therapeutics. Even before they had finished building, Dr. Hazzard’s new hospital drew people from all over the world. People wealthy enough to afford the very best medicine that money could buy.

Dr. Hazzard wasn’t shy about making sure she got every penny she deserved, forcing her patients to pay up front and even having them sign over power of attorney so she could control their fortunes, even if they didn’t survive her “treatments.”

For decades the doctor performed what she claimed were cutting edge treatments for deadly diseases, like cancer, on members of some of the most prominent families in the Seattle area. 

And, while many of her patients died under her care, Dr. Hazzard’s autopsies would show it was their illnesses that killed them, not her revolutionary medicine.

Even when neighbors started talking about the walking corpses they would see wandering around the property at night and there were headlines in the local paper about the “Woman MD” who kills her patients, the steady stream of high society clients continued showing up at her door.

They were desperate, sometimes dying, and always willing to do just about anything to buy back their health.

Whatever her motives, one thing was clear: Dr. Hazzard was hell bent on proving her treatments worked.  Even a conviction for murder wouldn’t stand in her way.

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