It is Christmas Eve 1928 and Charles Jr. (7 years old) and Eddie (2 years old) are hanging their stockings and praying that their daddy, Charles Zola Sherlock, who is lying in a hospital bed at Lutheran Memorial Hospital (in Chicago), will get the transfusions he needs to live. This Christmas won’t be the same for these two little boys and their mother Theresa Nebgen Sherlock, who is 6 months pregnant with her 3rd son. Now, Charles’ fate may be in the hands of his fellow policemen who are donating blood to save his life. How did this all happen?
Charles “Tiny Tim” Sherlock, 28 years old, was a detective at the East Chicago Avenue Station in Chicago.. He was the smallest policeman on the force and therefore went by the nickname “Tiny Tim”. This was during the time that Al Capone terrorized the streets of Chicago. While on duty on July 17, 1928, a speeding taxi cab struck the detective squad car, in which Charles was riding, and injured Charles. After a few weeks of recovering from his injuries, Charles went back to work at his police job.
Months later in December, Charles was rushed to the hospital with internal hemorrhaging. He was losing blood fast and needed transfusions to save his life. Many of his fellow police officers offered to donate blood but only four of them had the right type. Walter Casey, Charles’ old partner for 5 years from when he served at the North Robey Street Station donated 2 pints of blood – one on Saturday and then another 1 two days later. Another police officer from that same station, Edward Mendenhall also donated a pint of blood. After 3 pints of blood, Charles was finally on the long road to recovery.
In March of 1929, the family would return to the hospital but this time it would be a very happy occasion – the cesarean section birth of their 3rd son Donald Joseph Sherlock (my father).