Fun_People Archive
8 Nov
Update on the Craig Shergold Spam

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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Fri,  8 Nov 96 22:21:48 -0800
To: Fun_People
Subject: Update on the Craig Shergold Spam

[There are a number of innocuous urban legends going around: a JATO unit  
attached to a car, Nieman-Marcus cookies, etc., but there are a few that have  
caused (and are causing) genuine damage.  This press release describes one  
such.  You may want to verify it, and then pass it on...  -psl]

Forwarded-by: (Patrick Douglas Crispen)

Make-A-Wish Foundation of America
100 W. Clarendon, Suite 2200
Phoenix, AZ 85013-3518
(800) 722-9474
Fax: (602) 279-0855

Media Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- Call (800) 215-1333, ext. 184 for pre-recorded
Craig Shergold message.

                     UPDATE ON CRAIG SHERGOLD

PHOENIX, AZ - - An unauthorized chain letter encouraging people to send
business cards to a seriously ill boy continues to generate thousands of
pieces of mail each day, even though the boy is now healed and the family
has requested an end to the mail.

News reports stated in 1989 that Craig Shergold, a 9-year-old English boy
diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor, wanted to be recorded in the
Guinness Book of World Records for receiving the most greeting cards. His
wish was fulfilled in 1990 after receiving 16 million cards.

Shergold's tumor was successfully removed in March 1991. However, the cards
and letters continue. Several versions of the letter exist, most of which
wrongly claim that the young boy remains terminally ill and now wants to
receive the largest number of business cards. The addressee is encouraged
to gather business cards, forward them to an incorrect address in Georgia
and then forward the chain letter to 10 friends.

"The chain letter claims that Make-A-Wish is involved," stated James E.
Gordon, Chairman of the Board of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America.
"That is not true. Our organization is not, and has never been associated
with the letter. Yet our office continues to receive numerous phone calls
each month about the letter, diverting our staff time and resources from
our mission. The Make-A-Wish Foundation requests that people please stop
sending business cards or greeting cards to Craig Shergold."

The Make-A-Wish Foundation of America has set up a special 800 number to
explain the situation. Callers can listen to a pre-recorded message by
dialing (800) 215-1333, ext. 184.

Make-A-Wish Foundation of America, based in Phoenix, has 82 chapters in the
United States. Any child between the ages of two-and-a-half and 18 who has
been determined to have a life-threatening illness is eligible to receive a
wish. The first wish was granted in Phoenix in 1980, and since then
Make-A-Wish has granted more than 37,000 wishes ranging from building a
backyard fishing pond to an all-expense paid trip to Disney World.

For further information regarding the Make-A-Wish Foundation and qualifying
children, contact (800) 722-9474.

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