Over 50 years ago, founder Danny Thomas’ dream came to fruition with the opening of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Just ten years later, in 1972, Jim Maloof helped bring St. Jude’s lifesaving mission to central Illinois with the opening of the St. Jude Midwest Affiliate Clinic, allowing children and their families the ability to stay close to home for care and treatment.
Thirty-nine years ago the St. Jude Telethon was held for the first time in Peoria, Illinois to give our community a way to join the fight against childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to more than 80 percent since it opened in 1962.
The St. Jude Telethon is broadcast live from the Peoria Civic Center and Illinois Wesleyan University on WEEK-TV News Channel 25. Each hour local leaders and St. Jude supporters serve as Telethon V.I.P.S. who commit to raising funds for the kids of St. Jude.