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Bob Lind, Published January 22 2012

Lind: Breakfast Club still nourishing Neighbors

Fans of the Chicago-originated Don McNeill’s Breakfast Club continue to send in memories of the radio program.

Charlotte Engstrom of Moorhead says she enjoyed the show very much.

Recently Neighbors carried a note from a Breakfast Club listener who liked a song McNeill co-wrote titled “My Cathedral.” Charlotte remembers that song, too, and its opening lyrics: “I built a cathedral deep down in my heart, where God holds his counsel with me.”

That’s one memory of the Breakfast Club. Here’s another from LaVerne Simons, Pelican Rapids, Minn., who took nurses’ training in Chicago during the time the Club was on the air.

LaVerne, a 1944 graduate of Perham (Minn.) High School, wanted to go into nursing in the area of obstetrics and nursery.

“A nun told me about St. Vincent’s school in Chicago, so that’s where I went,” she writes. The college was near the place from which the Breakfast Club program aired, so sometimes after being on night duty, she and her friends would walk there and take in the broadcast.

After graduating from St. Vincent’s, LaVerne worked in Chicago and Minneapolis, then, after marriage, in Jamestown, N.D.

After raising a family of seven, she and her husband moved to Pelican Rapids, where she worked at the hospital and then served on its board for 18 years.

By the way, one of the physicians at the Chicago hospital where LaVerne first worked was Dr. Jonas Salk, developer of the Salk polio vaccine.

Laverne helped care for the children and babies Salk worked with while perfecting the vaccine, so she’d often meet him in the hallways.

Working in a hospital where Salk also worked must have been a real shot in the arm for her.


If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107; fax it to (701) 241-5487; or email blind@forumcomm.com.