Flight to end polio presented at Rotary

The June 23 meeting of the Marshalltown Rotary club was held at Elmwood following lunch. Many members joined the meeting virtually via Zoom.

President Jim Goodman gave a report of the food drive that occurred over the weekend. Good fellowship. Good visibility. Good cause.

Speaking of a good cause, Incoming President Mary Giese introduced Eastern Iowa Rotarian John Ockenfels to describe his upcoming Rotary flight around the world to end polio. Ockenfels said the idea grew out of one of Rotary’s many special interest groups. Scheduled to depart next April, he and his partner will be among a group of less than 300 people alive today that have accomplished this feat in a single-engine aircraft.

The two plan to cover all costs of the flight so that all money raised will go to fight polio. The Gates foundation will then match on a two-for-one basis. Ockenfels showed the projected route and a preview of some of the stops planned along the way, which include the site of the 2021 Rotary International convention.

He shared some of the planning and logistics related to this adventure and encouraged the group to help him share the story to help contribution toward the cause. The Marshalltown Rotary club joins Rotarians worldwide in eradication initiatives aimed toward this terrible affliction. Interestingly, Ockenfels was the Rotary District Governor who oversaw the implementation of the warm coat project that the Marshalltown Rotary club continues on behalf of district school children to this day.


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