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Bill's battle with the longlasting effects of polio

Polio survivor Bill Peacock will help host a dinner fundraiser. Photo Vicki Wood / Caboolture News
Polio survivor Bill Peacock will help host a dinner fundraiser. Photo Vicki Wood / Caboolture News Vicki Wood

BILL Peacock knows all too well the horrors of surviving polio, but the ongoing effects can be just as bad, so this month he has brought World Polio Day to the Bribie to raise money.

Bill spent seven years of his childhood in hospital where he endured the infamous breathing apparatus known as the "iron lung" and is now wheelchair-bound.

"I can't even begin to explain to you, it was the most horrendous contraption I'd ever seen," he said.

"I was in one (iron lung) for a month and I remember it quite clearly.

"They looked like a coffin, a metal coffin, and your whole body was put into them with just your head exposed.

"It made these horrendous noises like a lung breathing and you're attached to it."

Now Bill works for Polio Australia raising money for survivors because the government doesn't financially support them.

This year he has brought Polio Day (October 24) to his home town, an area that hosts a high ratio of polio survivors.

The effects of post-polio syndrome were largely unknown until the aging population of survivors began suffering symptoms from muscle weakness and chronic fatigue.

"Once it was eradicated in countries like Australia and the US we began to put it aside because we didn't believe it would affect people," he said.

"It was only as we started to realise in the 80s the survivors had all sorts of different symptoms reoccurring.

"As I got to my 50s it all hit me again."

In partnership with Rotary Bribie Island, they will host a luncheon and fundraiser with entertainment and prizes at the Bribie Island Hotel.

Shane Kells "Kellsy" will perform on the day and will feature special guest Gold Coast Benji and artwork from polio survivor Paul Constable-Calcott.

Tickets are $50 each and can be purchased at www.trybooking.com/IWSN or call Bill on 0403 686 998.

"We're just hoping for bums on seats," Bill said.

"We live in the best place on Earth, who wouldn't want to come?"

Topics:  polio


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