LAS VEGAS, Sept. 1 (UPI) -- Entertainer Jerry Lewis helped raise a record $65 million in pledges and contributions through his 43rd annual MDA Labor Day Telethon in Las Vegas.
Lewis performed his signature song, "You'll Never Walk Alone," during the 21 1/2-hour broadcast, which benefits the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The entertainment and fundraising program was carried by 180 stations throughout the country.
The 2007 edition raised $63.8 million, telethon organizers said in a news release.
The MDA said telethon contributions enable it to "fund research to find treatments and cures for muscular dystrophy and related diseases. Funds also support hundreds of MDA medical clinics, send thousands of children to MDA summer camp and provide assistance with the purchase of equipment such as wheelchairs and leg braces."
"Each year I tell myself: 'This has got to be it. There's no way we can do better.' Then, the following year, I'm astounded to see that generosity driven by love and compassion has a greater capacity than I thought possible," MDA National Chairman and telethon star Lewis said in a statement. "I am awed and humbled by this response."