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Letter: Help the fight to eradicate polio

Editor, Gazette-Journal:

It’s not often that residents of the Middle Peninsula can save the life of a child and have fun at the same time. This Saturday from 3 to 8 p.m. at the third annual Beer, Bands and Brats by the Bay at Williams Wharf, Middle Peninsula residents can do just that. Mathews Rotary joins Rotary International and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in a pledge to eradicate polio worldwide by 2018.

Poliomyelitis is a virus that effects nerves mainly in children age five or younger. Five to 10 percent of those paralyzed die when breathing is compromised. The virus is found in feces and saliva of the infected and spread by direct contact (sneezing, coughing) or in food and water contaminated with fecal matter. There is no cure for polio; therefore, protection through vaccination is critical. The polio virus remains alive until every child is vaccinated.

In 1979, Rotary clubs took on the project to buy and deliver polio vaccine to over 6 million in the Philippi...

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