I was up in New York preaching before all this took place, and I saw
Walt Smyth, Cliff and two other men there. He said, "Shockley,
we’re getting requests from people all over the southeast that
want to come to the Crusade." I said, "Oh, you are?"
"Uh-huh." He said, "Why don't you kind of head it up? You've got a lot
of friends down there." I said, "Do you think we could get
George Wilson to announce it in Decision Magazine, maybe?” He
FERM: Decision hadn’t started yet.
FEW: Well, what I meant to say the letter that goes out...the letter that goes out.
FERM: Yeah, we hadn’t started Decision yet. Yeah.
FEW: Okay. The newsletter that was going out.
FERM: Okay, okay.
FEW: And so he said, "Don't you tell him I told you to call him, but you go back to the New York hotel and call him. And...but don’t tell him I told you to." I said, "Well, I've known him as long as you have." He said, "Yes, I know. You call him." Because all these guys were in Youth For Christ, every single one of them.
FERM: There's no doubt about it, the Crusades have been direct output of Youth For Christ.
FEW: Yes. But anyway, I called George and he said, "Well, we'd have to have it in nine days." I said, "A little insert about six inches by three inches." "Yes, that's the size." “How many would you need for Georgia?" “Thirty-two thousand." “How many would you need for North Carolina?" “Thirty-eight thousand." I said, "Wait a minute. I've got to write this down." And I had to have it to him in nine days. I didn't even know what the price was going to be; I didn't know who the people I'd have to get in touch with to get on the train, or anything. But by faith, we went ahead and wrote these little things out and just said get in touch with so-and-so in Charlotte, Columbia, and so forth, and so on. Well, anyway, the thing mushroomed. We had 586 people on the first train that ran in the middle, in late June.
FERM: Because it lasted three months.
FEW: Yes. But even then they were talking about Yankee Stadium in late July. And the people said, "Listen, if they're going to have one in Yankee Stadium we want to come back." So actually, we had one full train and two partial trains on other railroads for Yankee Stadium. And I'm the only man that ever chartered a subway to Yankee Stadium.
FERM: That I didn't know.
FEW: Yes well, very few people...the man laughed at me when I called him. I said, "Sir, I expect to have maybe 600 or 700 people up here that weekend. Many of them are retirees, many of them are country folks that never saw a turnstile in their life and wouldn't know where to put the token. It would take us 25 minutes to load a subway if we had to use the tokens. Now, I'll pay you thirty cents a head for every person that gets on the train, and we'll just count on you having your men count them." And, I said, "I suggest you use your express track, because on Saturday you wouldn't be using that track anyway." He said, "Well, I'll talk to my superiors, and you call me back tomorrow. So, I called him back and he said, "Yes, we'll do it." So, it worked out fine. And course, as you well know, they didn't have enough seats for everybody, and a lot of them went to the center field. And before we left Columbia, I wrote this on their instruction sheet: regardless of where we sit at Yankee Stadium, take it easy when the meeting is over, and ten or fifteen minutes afterwards just make your way to the flag pole in center field," because our people were all over that stadium. By the time...Walt Smyth said, "Shockley, we can't really hold those seats. Those tickets aren't going to really do much good." He said, "I'd get up there as soon as I could." Well, we got up at 5:30. We thought that was plenty of time, but by the time we got there, if you went to the first section, by the time you got there it would be full and you'd have to go to the second section.
FERM: I know, I was there. That was the day Billy had a temperature of 104, and he preached, but he doesn't even remember what he preached.
FEW: And Dr. Charles Fuller was there. I sat right behind a young senator by the name of Richard M. Nixon. The old evangelist, who is still living, I think, played a saxophone in Youth For Christ days. He was there. It looked like....
FERM: A gathering of the....
FEW: Of the saints?
FERM: Of the evangelicals, yes.