Merilyn Arft (1924 - 2005)



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Merilyn Arft Biography & Family History

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Ballwin, Saint Louis County, Missouri

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1924 - In the year that Merilyn Arft was born, Macy's department store in New York held its first "Thanksgiving parade" on November 27th at 9a - during church services but leaving plenty of time to attend the big football game between Syracuse and Columbia universities. The parade was held as a way to promote the opening of the “World’s Largest Store” and its 1 million square feet of retail space in Manhattan’s Herald Square. The parade was 6 miles long and included floats, Macy's employees dressed as clowns, cowboys, and sword-wielding knights, and animals from Central Park Zoo. Santa Claus, of course, brought up the rear - opening the Christmas shopping season for Macy's.

1946 - When she was 22 years old, pediatrician Dr. Benjamin Spock's book "The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care" was published. It sold half a million copies in the first six months. Aside from the Bible, it became the best selling book of the 20th century. A generation of Baby Boomers were raised by the advice of Dr. Spock.

1976 - When she was 52 years old, on August 4th, a mysterious illness struck an American Legion convention in Philadelphia. Within a week, 25 people had died and 130 people had been hospitalized. It was the first known instance of what came to be called "Legionnaires Disease."

1988 - At the age of 64 years old, Merilyn was alive when on December 21st, Pan Am Flight 103 exploded over Lockerbie Scotland. The explosion killed all 259 people on board and another 11 on the ground. The flight had left Heathrow Airport in London less than an hour before, on its way to New York. After an exhaustive (and long) investigation it came to be believed that two individuals from Libya had planted the bomb.

1996 - At the age of 72 years old, Merilyn was alive when on July 5th, the first cloned mammal - "Dolly the Sheep" - was born in Scotland. She had three mothers. Dolly lived to be 6 years old and produced 6 lambs. Since, other sheep have been cloned as well as horses, pigs, deer, and bulls.

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Merilyn Arft passed away on March 29, 2005 at 80 years of age. There is no listed cause of death. She was born on September 13, 1924. There is no information about Merilyn's family. We know that Merilyn Arft had been residing in Ballwin, Saint Louis County, Missouri.


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