Eighty people agreed to serve as "jailbirds," calling from a phone bank to raise "bail" money, all of which went toward fighting neuro-muscular diseases and providing services to its victims. With Monett firemen not soliciting donations during Labor Day weekend be¬cause of construction on Highway 60 last year, the lock-up became the only organized event for the charity.
"This was a truly amazing year with 80 jailbirds who participated raising over $17,000," stated Jerry Bear, MDA district director. By 1:30 p.m. volunteers had received pledges of $13,430, topping the previous year's tally of $12,648.
Those who cleared the $500 bail goal and qualified as top money makers for the charity were: Mark Sebastian from EFCO Corporation; Tammy Reigle from EFCO Pallet Company; Richard Mettlach from Botts and Associates in Monett; Cynthia Martin from Huffmaster Insurance; Audra Lindner from Grande Tire in Pierce City; Sara Lay of Monett; Tim Larmer from EFCO; Josue Cavazos from EFCO Pallet Company; Geri Cary from Carey Electric; Dorothy Blinzler of Pierce City for Community Hospices of Monett; Clate Baker from the Public Defender's Office and Sanday and Elbert Alexander from Coldwell Bankers in Aurora.
Bear expressed appreciation to Grant's for use of its well-located facilities, and KOLR TV for hospi¬tality shown while hosting the event.
The Greater Ozarks Area Chapter of the Muscular Dystrophy Association benefits over 750 fami¬lies in the Ozarks affected by one of the 43 neuromuscular diseases covered under the Association's programs. Services include assis¬tance with the purchase of wheelchairs, braces and communi¬cation devices, a free summer camp for kids age 6-18 at Bear River Ranch in Rolla, free medical clinics at St. John's Regional Health Center and research being con¬ducted at Washington University in St. Louis and the University of Missouri in Columbia. All MDA's services are provided free of charge.
Bear added the fundraising ef¬forts of the lock-up would be ac¬knowledged during the 2009 Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon.