As a child, Victor dreams of the
glory [that] would attend the discovery if [he] could banish disease from the human frame and render man invulnerable to any but a violent death!
He starts to consider how wonderful it would be if he could manage to make human beings resistant to illness. As a young man, just about to leave for college, Victor is deeply affected by the illness of Elizabeth Lavenza, a close family friend, and the death of his beloved mother. He tells Captain Walton, of her passing,
It is so long before the mind can persuade itself that she whom we saw every day [...] can have departed forever—that the [...] sound of a voice so familiar and dear to the ear can be hushed, never more to be heard.
After his mother's death, the dream of rendering humanity invulnerable to disease takes on a new urgency, and Victor's desire to eradicate the effects of illnesses like scarlet fever (the sickness that took his mother and nearly took his friend) grows. It's unclear what the link is...
(The entire section contains 2 answers and 533 words.)