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Polio
John Ed Robinson

Mr. John Ed Robinson has known first-hand what a special place Children’s Hospital is since he was first treated here more than 65 years ago.

In 1945, Mr. Robinson, a lifelong resident of Centre, Ala., was stricken with poliomyelitis (polio). He was six years old. The doctors he saw in Georgia sent him to Children’s Hospital in Birmingham, which was then called the Crippled Children’s Hospital.

Mr. Robinson said that he and his father had to make many trips to Birmingham, and he credits the doctors and the Lord for pulling him through. He says he remembers his first visit, when he stayed for about six months.

“They’d make you feel like you were at home," said Robinson. "They’d bring toys, you’d play with them. You had just about anything you wanted.”

He received periodic checkups until age 18 and says that he had not been back in the hospital until last year when his grandson was being treated. While visiting, Mr. Robinson asked a nurse which of the hospitals used to be the Crippled Children’s Hospital. The nurse told him he was standing in it. He was delighted to hear that and shared his story with her.

“I’m really one of the lucky ones. I’ve always done whatever I’ve wanted to do. I worked for the county. I ran heavy equipment. I did mechanic work. I worked in the mill. Just any way I could make a living, and never had trouble with anything but my back.”

Without the help of the doctors at Children’s Hospital, Mr. Robinson says he believes he would have been crippled and bedridden for the rest of his life. Instead, he has lived a full and happy life.

“I would highly recommend Children’s Hospital. I know what they can do down there.”
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