Marilyn Monroe helped support the 14th annual March of Dimes fashion show at the Waldorf-Astoria. April 12, 1955, culminated more than 17 years of research that led to the licensure of the first poliovirus vaccine. The vaccine breakthrough was driven by Jonas Salk and his team of scientists at the University of Pittsburgh and the pioneering field trials led by Thomas Francis Jr. at the University of Michigan. The research was funded by the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, today known as the March of Dimes. The original purpose was to raise money for polio research and to care for those suffering from the disease. The name emphasized the national, nonpartisan, and public nature of the new organization, as opposed to private foundations established by wealthy families. The effort began with a radio appeal, asking everyone in the nation to contribute a dime (10 cents) to fight polio.
The name "March of Dimes" for the fundraising campaign was coined by entertainer Eddie Cantor as a play on the popular newsreel feature of the day, The March of Time. Along with Cantor, many top Hollywood, Broadway, radio, and television stars served as promoters of the charity. Because of his close association with the cause, Roosevelt was portrayed on the US dime after his death.
Marilyn Monroe with March of Dimes mission volunteers Sandra and Linda Solomon
Marilyn with the twins Sandra and Linda Solomon and Basil O'Connor
Marilyn and Basil O'Connor
Twins Solomon as postergirls for the March of Dimes Foundation