Fact Check

Anthony Parkin

Is a dying boy named Anthony Parkin circulating a chain letter?

Published Jan 2, 2000

Claim:   A little boy named Anthony Parkin, dying of leukemia, sent a message out on the Internet asking people to keep forwarding it so that some small part of him would live forever.

Status:   False.

Origins:   It was touching, heartbreaking . . . and not at all true.

Subject: My dying wish

My name is Anthony Parkin, and you don't know me. I'm 7 years old, and I have lukemea. I found your name using gopher, and I would like for you to carry out my dying wish of starting a chain letter. Please send this letter to five people you know so I can live forever.

Thank You very much

That's the text of an e-mail many people received. Went straight to the heart, it did. So little was asked . . .

Other than having to field inquiries about the non-existent Anthony Parkin since 1999, the Mayo Clinic knows nothing about him. He's certainly never been a patient there. Someone's prank kept them hopping, though: they had too many phone calls to answer and too many e-mail messages to reply that took time away from their real business of medical research.

Barbara "not only am I in favor of chain letters, I think they should lock 'em up and throw away the key" Mikkelson

Last updated:   8 October 2007


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