While Republican National Committee Chairman Lee Atwater battles his brain tumor, he and his family also face mounting medical expenses, some not covered by insurance. To help defray these costs, a group of friends and some members of the select group of wealthy Republican donors known as "Team 100," which raised some $10 million for the Bush campaign, have donated money to the Lee Atwater Trust for Medical Expenses. At least one prominent Republican money source has written a check for $10,000, the amount that had been recommended to team members.

Mary Matalin, RNC chief of staff, said yesterday that the fund is not associated with the RNC, nor are RNC members being solicited. "The money is coming from friends and colleagues who have worked with Lee over his many years in politics," she said. "And we are all most grateful for the help. Lee is sincerely overwhelmed with the generosity and support of his friends."

Out and About

Romantic ballad singer Jack Jones showed he was part of the "show must go on" tradition Wednesday night at Anton's 1201 Club, where he is performing this week. At the end of a second encore, Jones was singing the haunting "Music of the Night" from "The Phantom of the Opera," when he slipped and fell from the stage onto a table and was knocked unconscious. A few moments later, he arose, shook himself off and completed the song ...

Adm. William Narva, the former attending physician to Congress who is recovering from heart bypass surgery, stopped by the White House yesterday for a private ceremony in which President Bush presented him with the Distinguished Service Medal. Narva, who has been a popular personality on Capitol Hill, will end a 34-year Navy career when he retires from active duty Aug. 1 ...

Royal Watch: It had to happen. Prince Charles was hurt yesterday playing polo when he fell from his horse and broke his right arm. His wife, Diana, has expressed concern in the past about the 41-year-old heir to the throne playing polo, which is considered second only to auto racing as the most dangerous sport. Charles was reportedly making a shot when he lost his balance and fell during a match while playing for his team, Windsor Park ...

Fifty years after legendary director Frank Capra sent "Mr. Smith" to Washington, he and Smith, actor Jimmy Stewart, are to have a congressional gold medal struck in their honor. The House Banking, Finance and Urban Affairs Committee's coinage subcommittee decided Wednesday to strike the medals for the two major film world figures and for director Fred Zinnemann, the master of the western, who is best known for the classic film "High Noon" starring Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly. Capra is best known for such optimistic American films as "It's a Wonderful Life" and "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington," both starring Stewart ...

British rocker Boy George seems to be going in a different direction. His next album is to be titled "Jesus Loves You," and at a recent concert in Los Angeles he was backed by the Hare Krishna Temple Choir ...