My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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WASHINGTON, Tuesday—Yesterday morning we had the great pleasure of welcoming Madame Chiang Kai-shek here again. Her trip across our great country and the speeches she made, have been a very exhausting experience. I hope that during the next few weeks she can really rest and recuperate. She needs to build up her strength before returning to China.

Madame Chiang says she watched all of our countryside out of train windows, and was impressed by the similarity that exists between the Chinese and our own landscape. She has talked with many people individually and has met great crowds.

After an experience such as she has been through, she should need to see only very few people, and they should demand very little effort from her. To an outgoing person like Madame Chiang, it is difficult not to be drained of energy and strength after being with a great many people.

Some of you may remember a mention I made in my column of the heroic attempt of a foreman in the Pursglove, West Virginia, mine disaster. After escaping from a fire in the mine, he returned to try to free some of the other men who were lost and was himself killed. His name was Guy E. Quinn, and I heard today that the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission has awarded him a medal which is to be presented to his widow, who will also be paid monthly death benefits over a period of six years.

This fund was established by Mr. Carnegie in 1904. Since that time, the fund has paid the widows and other dependents of persons who lost their lives in the heroic saving, or attempt to save, the lives of others, the aggregate sum of $3,964,000. In addition, the fund has paid to heroes who performed such acts without losing their own lives, $1,875,000 to be used for educational expenses, the purchase of homes, or other purposes of permanent betterment.

In this particular mine disaster, looking up the case of Mr. Quinn, led to the discovery that Mr. Bradford Gainer had helped in the attempt to rescue ten other miners with Mr. Quinn, and was fortunate enough to come out alive. He has also been awarded the bronze medal and the sum of $500, which he can call upon for some worthy purpose approved by the executive committee of the fund.

I am happy that both these cases gained recognition. I think that we should be grateful for the spirit which recognized that deeds of heroism should be acclaimed. I am sure that every time a man or his dependents receive such recognition, it is of value to the country.



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About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, May 5, 1943

Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
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Digital edition created by The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project The George Washington University 312 Academic Building 2100 Foxhall Road, NW Washington, DC 20007

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Digital edition published 2008, 2017 by
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Transcription created from a photocopy of a UFS wire copy of a My Day column instance archived at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library.