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PORTLAND, Ore. -- One look at Paul Gaylord's hands shows why the plague is referred to as Black Death.

The central Oregon man who contracted a rare case of the plague last month after being bitten a stray cat has seen his once-strong hands darkened to the color of charcoal.

Doctors may be able to save a portion of his fingers. The 59-year-old man makes his living as a welder.

He faces a difficult recovery now that he's out of intensive care. His family is trying to raise money to get him into a new house, because the manufactured home he was living in has a leaky roof, a moldy bathroom and mice. Those are dangerous living conditions for a man with a weakened immune system.

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