Journal and Courier from Lafayette, Indiana on January 2, 2005 · 14
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Journal and Courier from Lafayette, Indiana · 14

Lafayette, Indiana
Issue Date:
Sunday, January 2, 2005
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JOURNAL AND COURIER LOCAL EDITOR PHILLIP A. FIOR1N1 Phone 420-5231 -Fax 420-5246 E-mail pfiorini Journal and Courier online: TATE vourl SUNDAY, JANUARY 2, 2005 Tfl(o W Si FUJI'S ONSr n(Q) n n Iru GuB1K By The Associated Press INDIANAPOLIS Work on moving and widening Interstate 70 for a new entrance to Indianapolis International Airport has been completed two years ahead of schedule. State and city officials have considered the $170 million highway project started in late 2002 with completion originally scheduled for 2006 as critical in relieving traf- Polio Iron lung helped many patients during 1950s By Stacey M. Lane Grosh The Herald Bulletin ANDERSON The monstrous machine is a pale, sickly, hospital yellow. It saved lives and led others to their death in the midst of an epidemic that closed swimming pools, ended public outings and forced parents to lock their children indoors. Fifty years later, some are still trapped inside those machines, while younger generations are growing up not even knowing the words "iron lung" or the horrors associated with the disease that led to its creation. Vaccines eradicated polio in the 1950s in the United States. But not in time to save 5-year-old Jack Robinson's mother. Or prevent Ellen Crim's hellish experience inside the iron lung while her body temperature soared to 106 degrees. Jack Robinson doesn't remember his mother taking him to a park. Or ever walking. Or even eating. "I don't remember my mom ever holding me," the 60-year-old Anderson resident said. Robinson's mother, Frances, contracted polio in the late 1940s and lost her ability to breathe on her own. "Fran," her chest muscles non-responsive, was left to live inside of an iron lung. An iron lung a cylindrical steel drum about seven feet long and 700 pounds encloses the entire body except the head. It is a respirator and a haven, giving victims an extension of life, doing the breathing for them. Air pressure in the iron lung contracts the patient's diaphragm, causing inhalation; opposite pressure expands the diaphragm, causing exhalation. "The iron lung breathed for the patient 16 times a minute," said Dr. Thomas P. Bright, a pulmonary and critical care physician at St. John's Medical Center. m In the early 1950s there . were more than 20,000 cases of polio each year. In 1952 alone, 58,000 cases were reported, according to the book "Patenting the Sun: Polio , and the Salk Vaccine." Three thousand died. Fran died in 1950. Finding closure About 50 years later, St. John's pulled out an iron lung acquired from the Robinsons as part of a hospital anniversary celebration. Jack Robinson stopped by. "I'd never seen it empty and it crushed me; I broke down," Robinson said. "That there was my closure. It took me to my knees." Bessie "Ellen" Hitchcock Crim once lay among a room of 50 iron lungs-humming in unison. Ellen's nightmare began on Aug, 6. 1949. While her father sat in the ER waiting for treatment for an ear infection, a teen was brought in dying' from polio. Her father was stricken with the idea that fic around the airport and generating economic growth in the area. The project included rebuilding an interchange west of 1-465 and building new ramps and bridges that will take travelers to the airport's planned new $275 million passenger terminal. "This will serve as the foundation for everything that will happen from an economic development standpoint and from an airport epidem ic a Jack Robinson, 60, sits in his home in Anderson and reflects on "My mom was so gracious. She never felt sorry for herself." "Imagine if that (eliminating polio) could really happen, if it was finally all over'' Jack Robinson his mother died of polio in 1950 polio could attack his three daughters and called home to ask a favor of his wife. "He'd heard there was insurance for this (polio). He asked her to call around and get polio insurance. ... Ten days later, I got sick." The insurance paid for the month Ellen spent in tho iron lung: $1,097.13. The'av-erage salary in the 1950s was $2,992. Ellen, an Anderson rt'i-dent, is sure &he been mo infected with polio from ko cream she purchased ot o local stand. The teen who Hold it to her and the friend ho ate with that day both came down with polio as well. Several days later, Ellen began to feel nauseous and became feverish. Then she began having trouble swallowing. "I ended up at Riley (Hospital for Children) and went straight into the iron lung." New form of polio Iron lungs filled hospitals during polio epidemics of the 1940s and 1950s, but the bulky machines were eventually replaced by smaller, portable ventilators. The polio vaccination was created by Jonas Salk in 1954 with a dead version of the virus. In the late 1950s, Albert Bruce Sabin tried to improve upon the Salk vaccine. By the mid-60s, an oral version of the vaccine was in . wide use. Since the vaccine became available, children have been receiving four polio vaccines between 2 months old and 6 years old. By 1960 the number of cases had dropped to about 3,000, and by 1979 there standpoint," state highway commissioner Bryan Nicol said Wednesday as a ceremony was held to formally open the 4.5-mile stretch. Nicol said careful planning allowed the quicker construction pace as workers built much of the new 1-70 before destroying the old roadway, limiting lane closures. The highway was shifted south to make room for a possible ex changed many lives I ; X l' J' 0 Family photo via Associated Press Whon ho wa$ 5, Jack Robinson shows his mother, Frances, a birthday card he received while a nurso from Ct. John's Hospital in Anderson adjusts the iron lung's pressure gauge in this 1 0W) ton lily photo, Frances Robinson suffered from polio and spent nearly three years in the iron lung In their dining room. She died shortly after this photo, at the age of 34. wertj only nbnut 10. The success of polio vaccination in the United States and other countries sparked a worldwide effort to eliminate polio. Now the polio survivors have grown up, but an estimated 250,000 Americans are facing a new form of the polio epidemic called post-polio syndrome. Sufferers complain of joint pain, decreased endurance and muscle atrophy associated with nerve loss from the initial polio. 'A museum piece' Ellen, now 67, is one of them. She is the president of the Central Indiana Post Polio Support Group that assists polio survivors in finding medical care, obtaining information about receiving state disability benefits which just came available for survivors last year and provides emotional support. About 40 polio survivors nationwide may soon be forced to give up their iron lungs. Respironics Colorado of Thornton, Colo., the only company that provides and pansion of the airport's FedEx facility. The road also was lowered below ground level so a taxiway for airplanes could be built over 1-70 should the need arise. The airport operates its two main runways north of 1-70, while space for a third runway exists on the inter-state's south side. The improved interchange is expected to replace the airport's cur- WW By Perry ReichanadterThe Associated Press his mother's death from polio when he was 5. Robinson said i! 1 Vj -4 A Jtit ft HI "The suggestion of cannibalizing the parts (of iron lungs) may not be the best. What we did 50 to 60 years ago is not what we do today. There are more advanced, portable ventilators now" Dr. Thomas P. Bright pulmonary, critical care physician services iron lungs, stopped guaranteeing parts and repairs for the equipment in March. The company is searching for iron lungs that can be used as substitutes or for parts. Respironics has offered to donate iron lungs to users who will assume responsibility for maintenance. "The suggestion of cannibalizing the parts may not be the best decision," Bright said. "What we did 50 to 60 years ago is not what we do . today. There are more advanced, portable ventilators now." "The iron lung has sort of become a museum piece now. The hospital retains it as more of a curio, a relic. It's a way to look back and m see how far we've come and what so many overcame." The Rotary International Club has been trying to eradicate polio around the world since the early 1990s by raising more than $130 million to have doctors travel to third world countries and vaccinate children. The number of polio cases has been reduced by a projected 99 percent since Rotary and partner agencies formed the initiative from 350,000 in 1988 to fewer than 1,000 in 2003, according to their Web site, Rotary's goal is to eliminate polio globally in 2005. "Imagine if that could really happen," Jack Robinson said, "if it was finally all over." rent entrance off 1-465 as the main route to the new passenger terminal, which is expected to open in late 2008. Developers, hotel companies and restaurants have already begun looking at land west of the airport along the Marion-Hendricks county line in anticipation of the new configuration. The 1-70 refurbishment is "more than concrete and asphalt," said Small town seeks money foi? flood program'"' I By The Associated Press VERA CRUZ Residents of a tiny town population 54 have been working to raise $100,000 to participate in a state program which would allow the town to buy out the owners of flood-damaged homes near the Wabash River. Nine homes and six other buildings were damaged during a July 2003 flood in the town about 40 miles south of Fort Wayne. The town government of Vera Cruz has little income, so residents started raising money to participate in the state's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program and buy out the property owners. So far, the Vera Cruz Flood Recovery Committee has raised about $84,000,' said Kent Park, who helped lead fund-raising efforts. The committee also hopes to finish the extensive paperwork for the application and submit it to state officials. Park said it has taken Fishing-tackle ; maker angles lot high-end market By Mike Bennett Palladium-Item RICHMOND Build the best and they will buy. That's the mantra of Gary Moorehead of Richmond, whose mind churns out creative ideas like Peyton Manning tosses out touchdown passes. In the world of fishing tackle, Moorehead sees clear pathways from what-ifs to whetting anglers' appetites. I Ie and his son, Brent, are trying to spark a new path in high-end fishing rods with their new company, ESOX. And they aim to use that as a ground floor to create a national outfitter that will draw buyers in droves to Richmond. "Orvis is my goal," Brent Moorehead said of the worldwide giant in fishing supplies and mail-order retailing. "I want to get into being a full outfitter, a manufacturing and retail business." "We can be to Richmond for fishing tackle what Tom Rap-er is to the RV business," Gary Moorehead added. The 63-year-old has good pedigrees in manufacturing and in fishing supplies. As a former co-owrner of Heddon the most-recognized fishing supplier in the world he had a hand in developing the Zara Spook from an underperformer into one of the most popular lures ever. The Purdue graduate also pioneered the development of graphite blanks used in modern fishing rods and found methods to paint lures to make them more fish-like and longer lasting. He left the fishing tackle business in the mid-1980s after the other owners chose to sell out. Last New Year's Day, the Mooreheads agreed it was time to get back into the market with a handmade fishing rod. "Let's do this," Brent remembers saying. "Let's do it the best," his father replied. Brent Moorehead, 34, said the fishing business always John Kish, director of the airport terminal project. "It's jobs and economic development " Hendricks County leaders hope to use the improved interstate as a springboard for additional residential, commercial and industrial development in the area. "This is going to drastically change the landscape in eastern Hendricks County," County Commissioner Steve Ostermeier saicL time to secure some of the necessary documentation to complete the application, in eluding flood certificates from the state Department of Natural Resources. B "The town knew it was a slow process," Park said. "We just need to keep moving forward." Vera Cruz's application is the only one for the hazard program filled out by volunteers, said Mary Moran, program director for the mitigation division at the State Emergency Management Agency. "It can be daunting to people that have never had to do a grant application be? fore," Moran said. "It's not just a one-page form that you fill out." The committee researched the history of disasters in the Wells County town, collected property tax information on all the structures, got estimates for the cost of buying all the properties and researched alternatives to the buyout program. I held a special allure for him. "I grew up around this stuff They (rods) were around the house all the time," he said. "J have been bugging him about starting the business." After months of research and development that included visits around the country, they started assembling the rods one by one last summer. Each takes four to five days to produce, finish and dry. "We could do them faster, but not at the quality level," Gary Moorehead said. "We're putting a little extra into everything." ESOX is a Native American term for mean, tough fish. The name is appropriate because a large marketing potential now is in muskie fishing, where catches can hit 50 pounds. i The company has four employees and will hire another in early January. They'll be added as orders grow. "Every 750 rods, we can hire a person," Gary Moorehead said. .., The rods sell for an average of $210 and come with a lifetime warranty. The first sale was finalized in August . " The Mooreheads have started a tackle supply business, too, at their manufacturing site in north Richmond. Gary Moorehead is a Lafayette native who's pas sionate about his beliefs whether it's politics, Purdue athletics or fishing products! "Why not think differently, be creative in ewrjthing you do?" he asks. "Why be like everybody else?" . i Before settling in RichV mond, he specialized in reviving troubled companies. At age 32, he was vice president of manufacturing for Victor, the company that owned Heddon: "I had no preconceived ideas. My job was turning around companies, to look at things creatively," he said. "(With Heddon) my purpose was to go into fishing tackle and turn it around. We made a lot of changes."

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