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Take you now to the barber shop of Matt Parker with Matt himself ready to bring you today's story. Funny what some little thing can do to a town. People go about their business pretty much as usual and all of a sudden something happens. The town is never quite the same after that. In our case it was the watermelons. It was a rainy day early last May I had just finished trimming MC Giuliani's hair. I still say you are too old for a crewcut mic. You're jealous Matt. You just wish you were 32 again. Oh you wouldn't catch me running around with a crewcut I know that when you catch you with anything except a trim around the frame is the rate you're going. What kind of excuse you got rigged up for band of bald Bartolo too busy telling other people how to save theirs I guess. Oh you're next Mr Kelvin
wife coming after you Mick. Yeah said she stopped about three. We're going after some groceries. Hope I didn't lose that list. No no here it is OK to have around all this rain. Yeah I. Got Mr killed and yes it was shit here she comes now. I want to. Serious left afternoon Mrs. delay near the newsman. What news. Little towns in boy's real sicko Bank town since boy's father works at that gas station on the highway. Oh yeah they're making some sort of appeal on the radio for and I didn't hear at all and the car radio on when I was parking is that Bob Muncie at the station on the radio. Oh you know. We wish to repeat our news bulletins on NEWSROOM has just learned that little 18 month old Kenny Thompson son of Henry Thompson of 1 0 9 Front Street is seriously ill. Kitty has a rare ailment of the
blood. One of the few foods you can eat is watermelon. I repeat what a melon watermelon if you know where any watermelon can be obtained from Little Kenny Thompson. Please let us know at once. There is an urgent need for water balance where you're going to get what I want around here and made you i never the point person 15 minutes Parker-Bowles sorry Mr. Kelvin and don't fit too much on the tall windows or your phone man. But oh sure mic right over there right. Operator 1 3 0 8 players. Hello. Radio station I want to speak to Bob Muncie. Hello Muncie. Nick DELANEY Yeah flying service. No I'm at the OK barber shop now. Yeah right down the street. You off the air for a while. Good. And you come over for a few minutes. Yeah right away. I think I know where I can get some watermelon. Kids really sick on the very serious Delaney. His only hope is to get some watermelon. How much does the
kid need as much as we can get. OK I met a guy down in South Carolina when I was in the army. He'll have some. Always did we bivouacked near his farm and how you're going to get there that's a thousand miles from here. I've got a plane. I have it ready in an hour. I'll be ok Nora. It's raining hard. I know it. All right now when we leave as soon as I can. You better not come out to the airport. I won't be careful now. I will. Can I do anything for you Mrs. Delaney. No thanks man. Oh I just thought yes yes you can. You can let me use your phone. That little boy's mother. She could probably use some help cooking or something. I'm going to call some of the girls now when you finish me. Oh no. Oh yes sir. Mr. Kalvin excuse me just a moment Mrs. Delaney. Does your husband usually go by the name of Mickey. Yes yes he does. What kind of a plane as a flight is this for the radio. Yes I thought I'd announce that your husband is flying to South Carolina for one of Midtown Tunnel publicity Mr. Muncie but the people want
to know. Tell them the watermelon is coming. Don't tell them who. And I hope he makes it. Say Is that a hank Thompson's Boy you're talking about. That's the one I'd place in now. I gave him his first haircut about 5 0 6 months ago. Only about a year old then his folks were with him cry out as punch. They'd borrowed somebody's flash camera took a picture of him getting his fairest hair cut. Never did see if the picture came out. Kid bawled all of that's the kid toy tyke. Wish there was some way I could help. Oh that's all Mr. Calvin get back there. Oh yes sir just the way you want it. Well. How much do you want Alexa you came over here to hit me for something for those for those Thompson people isn't that it. Why no I didn't come over here to hit anybody for anything. That little kid is sick all a publicity stunt for that pipsqueak radio station he doesn't need watermelon any more than I do. The boy is done. Don't preach at me young man.
I suppose they'll need something to keep the melon cold. I'll send them a refrigerator from the stall that's fun I'll go put this on the car and Ladley I'll say that the local militia say that ha like Calvin of the Calvin hardware stores donated the use of a new one 1953 maxim refrigerator I can't say it. I can't say that Mr Kelvin I mean well. Well this is a charity thing and the other people who don't like your attitude young man don't have much take my advertising off suddenly on the thought I was something I took my coat and left the shop. As I drew near the airport I switched on my car radio months he lay there looking Thompson continues to mount a volunteer whom we can't identify is already preparing to bring in some watermelons from the sub women of the community are eating Mrs Thompson and her cooking and housework. The Thompsons have
three small daughters in addition to the sick boy and our latest report a little merchant has donated a new refrigerator for the Thompson family to keep the watermelon in if it arrives in time. Meanwhile the condition of little Kenny Thompson continues to grow worse. There's been no change reported since I last put a low good merchant code squeeze it out of the Muncie didn't know it had it in you. Oh yeah we're here. What was. That. What are you doing now go ahead and cut your mic. I had no idea it might help you get the melon quicker. You got the name of this guy in South Carolina the one with the melons and where he lives yeah I dug it up from the Christmas card he sent but what's let me have it. I'll give it to my boy and your born old keys got an amateur radio rig up in his room if he can raise someone in South Carolina on the radio they can have the melons waiting for you might save a couple hours. Better than
telephoning because old Keef can figure is helping that way. Good idea. Here I'll put the address on the back of this gross invest there they're give it to Laura when you're through with it. I should be back in about four hours time. Five minutes to 12 hour time. When Keith got the word from an amateur operator in Columbia South Carolina he told him Mick was on the way back with a load of watermelon at 4 a.m.. I picked up Mrs. Delaney. She looked like she hadn't had any sleep anything more about the boy getting slowly weaker stations been on all night keeping up with the news. Yes let's go.
The rain had stopped but the airport was chill and dark. Vic had given me the key to the emergency field lights. I turned them on. Sat in the car. We talked a little. We waited. Glad you brought the coffee. I thought we might need it. You say they'll be a police car here to take the melons into town. Yes about five Thompsons know they're coming months he stopped and told the whole kid pulls through. Yeah. Did you hear. No too soon yet Laura only got something for you for God. Mick said to give it to you. What is it. Wait. I'll get the top light on the other side. Just the grocery list I gave. Look. Look what he wrote in the bottom of the list. Let him see man corn potatoes bread what a melon. There it is right there I am right
now. It's just that I worry any time he flies into a mess. Listen it was a plane in a few minutes Mick Kidd landed the melons were loaded into the police car. Big wings they were and the car raced for the Thompson house. All of a sudden I was kind of shaking let down I guess. It wasn't anything we could do now. Laura and I was sat in the hangar and watch mic check over the plane. I found a little radio and brought it in and turned it on. The sun was coming up. Nothing new I guess. We got music takes time. Yeah. Ladies and gentlemen here is the latest word about Kenny Thompson. His father is here in the studio and he wants to talk to you over here Mr.
Thompson. Oh boy. He got the watermelon Kenny died about 20 minutes ago. I fed him some of the watermelon when it came but he died when he was our only boy. Thank you for trying to help some of you I didn't even know. Ladies and gentlemen little THOMPSON But I'm just a kid died you couldn't help the kid die. It was the biggest human roulette I could remember in town. Everybody was there. By the time the boy died the whole town had heard about him and most of them wanted to help. There was some talk afterwards about raising a fund building a memorial or something. But we didn't need anything like that. It's all there. Right. Thompson saw that. Her
production was sponsored by the. Alley.
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Producing Organization
Grinnell College
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
"Watermelon," by Don Anderson. Is it "all a publicity stunt for that pipsqueak radio station...or is watermelon for a sick boy important enough to send a pilot a thousand miles through the rain?
Series Description
A series of 13 patriotic plays by professional freelance writers as edited and directed by Herbert Prescott with the Grinnell College Radio Players.
Broadcast Date
Performing Arts
Media type
Actor: Weinfeld, Nancy
Actor: Leavenworth, Jim
Composer: Carpenter, Hoyle
Director: Prescott, Herbert
Funder: Fund for Adult Education (U.S.)
Performer: Burroughs, L.C.
Producing Organization: Grinnell College
Production Manager: Reed, Tom
Writer: Anderson, Don
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 54-1-7 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:14:34
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Chicago: “Patrioscript; Watermelon,” 1953-11-16, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 21, 2024,
MLA: “Patrioscript; Watermelon.” 1953-11-16. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 21, 2024. <>.
APA: Patrioscript; Watermelon. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from