More than 100 people walked a three-mile path along the Bronx River Parkway Saturday morning during the fourth annual Walk for a Cure, many of them students wearing orange and black ribbons—Tuckahoe school colors—pinned to their T-shirts and jackets.
“The kids, I’m speechless that these kids still come out year after year,” said Tuckahoe Village Trustee Greg Luisi whose son, Paul, was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia in August 2004.
The $4,000 raised from the walk—sponsored by Tuckahoe High School students in conjunction with The Paul Luisi Foundation—will help fight pediatric cancer through research and help those who lives are affected by it.
Now 18 and a vibrant high school senior, Luisi was inducted into his school’s National Honor Society in 10th grade. The following year, the Society began raising money in his name for charitable organizations with help from high school guidance counselor Marcia Tiggs.
“I’ve had two perfect transplants from my brother, and they have been through this with me from the start,” Luisi said of his family and friends.“It shows the support of the community.” He will enter the University of Delaware as a freshman in September.
Luisi's classmate, Alex Castrocucco, who was diagnosed with cancer in infancy, also attended the event.
Tiggs noted that more students were becoming interested in Walk for a Cure.
“Since you don’t need to pre-register, it’s always a surprise who shows up,” Tiggs said. “It’s enriching to see the good in others."
Greg Luisi thanked participants and the community for their generosity. “I’m overwhelmed that people have been coming for the walk,” Luisi told the small crowd gathered near the field. “You have met the monster, and I’m so grateful for everyone’s support.”
He said that each year the Foundation gives money to a different organization.
“The first year, in 2008, we raised $5,100 and gave it to the Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program at Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital,” he said. “In 2009 we raised $3,000 and bought a Nintendo Fun station for the children’s hospital, and last year we raised $4,000 for Make-A-Wish Foundation® of the Hudson Valley.”
Tiggs added, “You never know where your efforts will lead and what effect you will have on others.”