The San Francisco Examiner from San Francisco, California on September 27, 1942 · 14
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The San Francisco Examiner from San Francisco, California · 14

San Francisco, California
Issue Date:
Sunday, September 27, 1942
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12: i THE SAN FRANCISCO EXAMINER: SUNDAY. SEPTEMBER 27. 1942 crcc Life Giving Iron -Lungs Bequeal to Hosmtals TO SAVE MANY FRDIKLDEATH Wealthy Philadelphia Woman Leaves Respirator Fund for Paralysis Victims hed 1 WILL JOTA:iO SiDi; V:-'f " :--.! Alps: A f: S: :j x ::' . , " a sSj 1 : i I X 4y f :-.'': AS : . '"rjT-:'"'v ;:;''.'''! :. - :5: V?F; iiDro?svr::" f rf ?() a: j K; :' ;s:a;-vg':. ZmK I my mmmr-lmmmrammM ? - U I - i whsCH AiScS ' -.: :( , f n.., ' f a? cor-?-;:;?- i st Ir s-wnsns m uxnmzxA. : 1 rr"-'J ?r -w."J ., ;:;::;:vs;;tV?;-;:;;sy;:S 'UTGSrwH;CH must 8 y;:;-p .- ;. lil fno&ni$cHH -M- ' i ?;:!':irOg iS :K HOW-: ; -': j VV-i C" NU?S3" ASM5F:::;: :v ;DOUBil nm?&mi W:: h ' jV urrfy MLUHAINIUAL MAUIC Ihe JJnnker type of "iron1 lung" is shown in above photo diagram. Note that in an emergency it can be operated by hand a great advantage in event an air raid might cut off electrical current. wTrttnrnntinnnl Xpwb Photo. I'm ...-- y: s,.,. -: --::::v:: 1.1 ' . . .-.v. . . ..u....vawWW'''w V k f S i ''::::-'! V -: W -' ..: 'i - -:- :--:vi,-::::v;:::i::1:-:-- '-. : -: -i; :.::';'.; r. - . m - 5 r y . j ,,r7 ' . -mmm ::?-i:r f y ;my . ! ' --M-l I :: -. -:;:;;-:,;:;::y m ?":: t. -5.::;-:& -'. ; W : . . . v; : ' :' .. - . r; - , -mmmmimm -.. m$mm. --mmmn ) : miiws& w-Mi Y:immmtm:'H:"mmM ; :.; mMmmmimmmBM i ;:i! i :. vmmmmmmm " : - m f-r.-".-.:- -s.::: i " - -il l:v::ii::i::::f:iA . I -5. . ' - - - ',. ;,t,- ' ' '"".. ''"x-'rK-'"--. v!r'V'';''::':;;:-:--vv,.:.. ' f ' 1 .;,.:.f "" ft--:::: : i mmmmm 1 COURAGEOUS Fred Snite Jr. amiles happily from i face is seen in the mirror. His case is an outstanding his iron lung at his wife and their daughter. Snite's example of the life saving qualities of the lung. , , , -International Jvev Photo. :V. m COMPACT in the portable chest respirator presented to him r . m - oteve Happney of Miam,, Fla., pictured Fred Snite Jr. The lieht aooaratu, nar iK w..... oy ( the i necessity of remaining in the big "boiler." ; -International News phots. PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 26 (Universal Service.) Fever-worn and restless, a small girl suffering from infantile paralysis tosses in her sickbed. Suddenly her breathing becomes spasmodic, painful. Her lungs refuse to function. She gasps agonizedly for breath. A few years ago she would have been doomed to early and certain death. Today, her doctor makes a hasty phone canvass of nearby hospitals to find an "iron lung" that is not occupied by another patient. Soon the child is breathing reg ularly and painlessly In the life saving device, with a good chance for complete recovery. LACK OF LUNGS. But not all hospitals have Iron lungs. For that reason, the re cent "mercy will" of a Philadel phia woman, bequeathing money for thirty of the "iron lungs' to twenty hospitals actually amounted to a gift of life to many a poliomyelitis sufferer. The testatrix, Mrs. Blanche B. Gilbert, went even further. She instructed that if sufficient funds were left in her estate when liquidated, eighteen more iron lungs should be given to hospitals in and around this city. The thirty directly provided for doubles the number of iron lungs in this re gion. MANY LOSE CHANCES. Dramatic escapes from death as a result of the speedy use of the iron lung have focussed public attention on the machine in the last several years. The fortitude of Frederick B. Snite, Jr., 32, the self-tyled "Boiler Kid" of Chicago; of Birdsall Sweet, 24, of Pough- keepsie, N. Y., of Gloria Barton, 14, of Staten Island, N. Y., and of many others who owe their lives to the iron lung, inspired philanthropic persons and organizations to equip hospitals in various parts of the country. Yet, according to figures re cently made public by the Na tional . Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, there are today (exclu sive of the Gilbert bequest) only 977 iron lungs in the 7,000 hospitals throughout the nation. Also, about half of these are normally occupied by patients who must remain in them in order to sur vive. This means, of course, that, in too many cases, other patients I in need of iron-lung aid must lose their chance. A pathetic and widely publicized case in point was that of Maybellef Outcault, 12 year old ("Colorado poliomyeltis sufferer. When the paralysis attacked her respiratory system, she was rushed to the only hospital in Denver equipped with an iron lung. But the other "lung" was already in use, maintaining life in tne paralysis stricken body of a two year old baby, Shirley Krause. MERCY DASH FUTILE. Physicians attempted to meet the crisis by removing Shirley from the mechanical respirator lor brief periods in order that Maybelle might have her chance at life, too. Meanwhile, the Chicago Herald-American, a Hearst newspaper, rushed an additional respirator from Chicago to Denver. All in vain. The younger suf ferer could not be removed from the hospital's one iron lung long enough to give the new patient a chance. And, a few minutes be tore the emergency respirator reached the hospital, Maybelle gasped out her last painful breath. Denver hospitals now have four mechanical respirators, and it is unlikely that the city will ever witness a similar tragedy. But in other cities and localities, dangerous shortages of iron lungs still exists, hence, the importance of such gifts as the Gilbert bequest. However, even at its worst, the situation is infinitely better than previous to 1928, the year the first Drinker respirator was successfully used on a human patient. Up to that time, sufferers from lung paralysis had only the shadow of a chance to survive. SAVE UNBORN BABIES. Since then, the number of recoveries has steadily mounted each year, keeping pace with the increasing number of lungs that have been installed in hospitals, either through purchase or by donation. In several cases, the respirator has even saved unborn babies. One infant so saved was the baby mmmmmmmm- mmr-:rmmm' It?A?;.& fc:mmU Mmmmi: mMm.iimmme:Mi- -SMmmmi mmmymwmm mmmmmwm wmgmmmlmmi. Smmmmmtm i t m Kliaii-iiaiMrt M J-, Mr-mWf ' f S M JC V-i. i fmZ FIGHT LOST Maybelle Outcault, 12, shown in an iron lung in a Denver hospital, actually was doomed to death before -this picture was taken. One iron lung had to be alternated between two patients, and Maybelle succumbed. Efforts now under way. assure more lungs to save more lives of patients. Tntpmrttlonnl Vpit. Thoto. daughter of Mrs.- Gertrude Ep stein, 22, of Chicago. Suffering from . poliomyelitis, with acute respiratory paralysis, Mrs. Epstein was a patient in Mount Sinai Hospital. She cou'ld not be removed from the respira tor for a moment, and her little daughter thus became the first baby to be born in an iron lung.j The mother lived only another twenty-four hours, but the baby, showing no ill effects from her strange entrance into the world,; survived. - In 1940, Mrs. Grace Volkman was taken out of an iron lung in a Minneapolis hospital and placed on an operating table while a facial mask kept her lungs supplied with oxygen. A Caesarean section delivered her of a girl weighing five and a half pounds. Both mother and baby survived. OLDEST "IRON LUNGER." The oldest "iron lunger" In number of years spent in the de vice is Birdsall Sweet, who has been occupying the respirator in Vassar Hospital, ' Poughkeepsie, N. Y., since September 21, 1931. He has grown from a boy of 13 to a man of 24, and is now well enough to spend his days in a wheel chair, going back to the "boiler" only at night. Birdsall, a great baseball fan, has recently taken to composing music. Gloria Barton, 14, of West New Brighton, Staten Island, is a bright eyed, cheerful example of the life saving virtues of the iron lung. In 1937, Gloria fell prey to infantile paralysis. Both legs, both arms, and her , breathingH were paralyzed. Besides this she had a curvature of the spine. Four months in a lung in Rich mond, Staten Island, strengthened her respiratory muscles so that she could breathe unaided. A year in another hospital, during which her spine was operated on, followed, then a long period in a plaster cast. As for pluck, the laurel must also be awarded to "Boiler Kid" Snite of Chicago. In 1936, while he was on a tour of the world, young Snite became a "polio" victim. Fortunately for him, there was an iron lung in the Rockefeller Hospital at Peiping and there he remained for fifteen months. 4 - f ) ':m:-:-yy:y:m'-:-mmyy my m'-m v.'.':-'.: V. wmmmmsfiM Miiipppi "4 1 - m' a y- ' - V" HISTORIC First baby ever born of a mother in an iron lung to survive is Gertrude Epstein, shown in arms of nurse at Mt. Sinai Hospital, Chicago. I - Tnlcrnational yV "Photo. cost of $50,000, moved his son in a respiratbr from Shanghai onto a liner across the Pacific, Ocean to San Francisco, thence to Chicago. - Young Snite's unbroken cheerfulness gained him the plaudits of the world. A mirror affixed above his head gives him a view of something more than the ceil ing. With its help he can play cards, read and write and take part in other activities. A special air conditioned trailer takes him and his respirator about the, country. He has visited Miami, where, last year he gave Steve; Happney,; a young father stricken with poliomvelitis. a ight, port-able "chest breather" which makes it possible for the wearer to spend some time each day outside the "boiler." Snite himself spends two hours In June, 1937, his father, at a each day in the portable breather. On August 10, 1939, Snite, still in the lung, married Theresa Larkin, former college mate of his sister, Mary Loretta. He had ,' known his bride for seven years. The ceremony was performed by tne Kev. J. w. Morrison in the elder Snite's home in Ri vpr Forest, 111. The bridal couple spent their honeymoon touring in , the bridegroom's tariler. On September 22, 1940, a girl baby was born to Mrs. Snite. Grandpa Snite reports that the daughter, Theresa Maria (Pinkie), ' now two, helps make Daddy's toast and often feeds him. Fred's general health remains good except for hay fever which I afflicted him this season. During the summer he was ; almost a daily visitor to Chicago race tracks, his trailer being parked in the infield at the finish ! line. , ! J -"ymm m m:- ,v m Tv hr' . -fm i ) ' m' ' - r& ... .-. - - m:y i 4 V- ymmm-y, m mmmwm mg m, . J, SAVED Gloria Barton, who lives only by grace of the iron lung. Stricken with infantile paralysis in 1937, both legs and arms were paralyzed. Now 14, she can walk and is making steady progress toward complete recovery. "-loumatioaalXewt Thou. ' J

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