My name is Dorothy Niemeyer Gorman. I was 10 years old at the time of the hospital fire. I thought it might be of interest to learn a little more about the donation request letters sent in envelopes addressed and stuffed by volunteers.

One such group gathered in a meeting room in the basement of the Benwood Hotel. My mother Madlynn Niemeyer volunteered the two of us. We all sat at long tables and wrote every guest who had ever checked into the Benwood by signing his or her name and address in the hotel register.

We each worked on one register page at a time, front and back. The hope was that those who had actually spent time in Effingham would be more inclined to donate to our new hospital.

What a wonderful opportunity it was for a 10 year old to help in some way with all the adults’ efforts during that tragic time.

I cherish that memory.

Dorothy Gorman

St. Louis and Lake Sara