The following story originally appeared in the Sept. 30, 1949 issue of The Press. – Editor
Amounts of $5,400 were pledged and $4,500 collected as the result of a five-hour program presented last Thursday night over KFMO at Flat River, on behalf of the emergency drive for funds for the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis.
At 7 o'clock the officials of the St. Francois County Infantile Paralysis Committee went on the air and made their appeals. Broadcasts were conducted by ministers of the area under the direction of Rev. A.R. Hicks of Flat River; superintendents of schools under William Suddath of Desloge; and musical quartets under Rev. Fred Hartman of Esther.
Six telephone numbers in Flat River, Farmington, Doe Run, Bismarck, Leadwood and Bonne Terre were given and listeners called in donations in their towns. The results were relayed to KFMO and acknowledgment made by Dixie Robinson, Richard Batten, Mayford Burns and James Collins.
Batten, Burns, Collins and Robinson comprised the general committee in charge of the program. Rev. Hicks headed the ministers committee and Suddath the school committee. Rev. Hartman and Robert Fowler had charge of the talent committee.
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An unusual fact of the drive is that of all the donations called in, the highest individual contribution was $210, which was from the father of one of the boys who was victimized by polio this summer. The majority of the donations ranged from $1 to $20. The average amount for each person in the county was 15 cents, which is above the expected in charity drives.
The state officials of the National Foundation said this week that the drive would be extended since mail contributions of $4,256.48 reported by Saturday were exceedingly poor, compared to the expenses of $150,000 a day for patient care.
Interesting figures presented by these officials show that there are at present 995 cases of polio in Missouri, resulting in advances of $265,922.11 being sent to the state by the foundation. In addition to the money, the foundation has sent 81 nurses, 6 physical therapists, 22 iron lungs, 23 hot packs, 12 beds and 125 pounds of wool supplies to Missouri hospitals.
St. Louis and St. Louis County, with 396 cases, had the highest total in the state, and were advanced $70,000, plus $16,744.23 for outstate patient care. Jackson County, including Kansas City, reported 113 cases, and was advanced $51,000. Pemiscot County was fourth in the state in number of cases with 56, having an advance of $15,000.