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Dr. Harrower's Good Deed

October 18, 1990

I always enjoy Around the Foothills, but never more than on Sept. 27 because of your mention of the origin of the brick building on East Broadway as the Harrower Laboratories.

Dr. Henry R. Harrower and his wife were responsible for my mother coming from London to Glendale and, years later, for the saving of her life. The story goes like this:

My mother, Florence Southey Munce, was the English nanny for Dr. and Mrs. Harrower's daughter, Verna Haining. When Verna was a little girl, the family moved from London to Glendale. As is often the case in England, a very close emotional tie develops between a nanny or governess and the child. Such was the case here. In fact, Verna missed my mother so much that Dr. and Mrs. Harrower asked if mother would consider coming to Glendale to resume her position and she accepted.

While here, my mother met my father at the Glendale Seventh-day Adventist Church (which was also attended by Dr. and Mrs. Harrower) and they were married. Then along came me.

When I was about 8 years old, my mother became very ill, and since she was hemorrhaging extensively she was told that she must have surgery within 10 hours or she might die. Nevertheless, the hospital would not admit her without money. We were in the midst of a Depression, and while we had a small home that was debt-free, my mother would not mortgage it to get the money. She refused to do so--very courageously--because she felt if the surgery was not successful that she wanted me to at least have a home.

Dr. Harrower came to the rescue. He had developed a liver extract that he was sure would replace the strength that she was losing. It was not yet on the market, but he gave her enough of the product, delivering it to her each day personally, that it did get her through the illness. The other kindnesses shown were also impressive.

I was about 7 years old at the time--my mother was about 48 years of age. I was blessed by having her with me for almost 30 years longer, and there is no question in my mind--or in the mind of the doctor who had recommended the surgery--that Dr. Harrower's liver extract saved her life.

It is interesting that the wonderful, caring vibes that were there under Dr. Harrower's ownership seem to have remained in the building and have been picked up by David Bandley in his caring for the soldiers in Saudi Arabia.

Dr. Harrower would be happy to know that.

DOROTHY COLVIN

Glendale

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