Mine is not so much re-telling a story, as it is speculation.
In the genealogy research I have been doing, I found out that my great-great-grandparents moved with their two young daughters ages 2 and 3 from South Carolina to Mississippi in the late 1860's. The 3-yo was my great-grandmother (GGM). The family was there for only a few weeks when the parents contracted yellow fever and both died at the age of 24 within a weeks of each other.
After their parents' death, the girls were raised by their maternal grandmother in South Carolina. The speculation is, how did they get back? There were no family members in Mississippi that I can tell, so kind people either
1. cared for the girls until their relatives arrived to collect them, or
2. they were escorted by kind people back to their kin.
Either way, there must have been community support that helped out. I learned of this story recently from a newly acquainted cousin who is in his 90's, and remembers GGM (his grandmother) well.
The whole story makes me a bit sad, appreciative of our medical care today, and appreciative of how we care for each other.