It’s a plane…it’s a star…it’s Haley’s Comets!

It’s a plane…it’s a star…it’s Haley’s Comets!
Photo by Georgine Benvenuto

Bay Ridge

In honor of the memory of Haley Gray Daquara, Pediatric Cancer Awareness month, and folks in need, Haley’s Comets held its annual drive at Greenhouse Cafe on Sept. 27.

Giving residents, including Richie Catalli and Rana Abu-Shaih rolled up their sleeves, pumped their fists and got ready to donate.

Every drive is important, but none so much as this year. Bobby Daquara said he received an e-mail from the New York Blood Center, that the president and chief executive officer of OneBlood in Florida was in desperate need of blood and platelet products.

The memo explained that 10 million evacuees were pouring back in, and massive congestion as well as no gas was impeding blood collection initiatives.

So what better way to honor Haley, who was just 9 months old when she was diagnosed with a rare genetic storage disorder called Hurler Syndrome, than to donate this year’s blood where it was needed most.

Through the rounds of transfusions and treatments Haley went through she never stopped in living her mantra of “I can do it.” She maintained a strength few adults possess, was always smiling and playing, and determined to be like everyone else.

The annual event celebrates Haley’s extraordinary courage and bravery — along with her laughter and joy.

Greenhouse Cafe [7717 Third Ave. at 77th Street in Bay Ridge, (800) 688–0900].

Borough wide

Hero teen

Thanks and kudos to borough son Mark Kindschuh. The daring hero was awarded the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps Medal of Heroism for his bravery on June 3 in London, England during a terrorist attack. While in England for studies abroad, Mark risked his own life to save a complete stranger who was in need of medical attention. Our hero was a lifeguard and used his knowledge in emergency training to help the man who was bleeding from his head.

Senator Charles Schumer(D–Park Slope) and Rep. Dan Donovan, (R–Bay Ridge), praised Mark’s efforts and in a letter to the Army said, “As an ROTC Cadet, he (Mark) is most deserving of the Medal of Heroism.”

Senator Schumer added, “On behalf of all New Yorkers, I want to congratulate ROTC Cadet Mark Kindschuh for being awarded the ROTC Medal of Heroism.”

Congressman Donovan said, “I’m so proud to represent this young man in Congress. His bravery and selflessness serve an example to us all. I’m sure the ROTC Medal of Heroism he courageously earned is just the beginning of a bright and impactful career of service to our country.”

The U.S. Army Medal of Heroism is a U.S. military decoration awarded by the Department of the Army to a Reserve Officers’ Training Corps cadet who performs an act of heroism. The achievement must be an accomplishment so exceptional and outstanding that it sets the individual apart from fellow students. The performance must have involved the acceptance of danger and extraordinary responsibilities, exemplifying praiseworthy fortitude and courage. The Medal of Heroism is the highest Department of the Army medal awarded to Reserve Officers’ Training Corps cadets.

Mark is currently an Reserve Officers’ Training Corps cadet and enrolled in Boston College.

Sheepshead Bay

Pols ask for help

Assemblymembers Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Sheepshead Bay) and Pamela Harris (D-Coney Island), State Senator Diane Savino (D–Bay Ridge) and the Shorefront Y have launched a humanitarian relief effort to help residents in hurricane-stricken Puerto Rico.

What’s needed:

• Baby food

• Batteries

• Canned food

• Diapers

• First aid supplies

• Feminine hygiene products

• Rubber gloves (Latex)

• Heavy-duty construction gloves

• Anti-bacterial wipes

• Battery-operated flashlights and lanterns

• Filtered face masks

Drop off items to Shorefront Y on Oct. 8 from 8 am – 4 pm

“It’s up to our communities to step in and do what we can to ease this heartbreaking situation. We know firsthand the devastation that natural disasters can wreak on coastal communities. We at the Shorefront Y are proud to partner on this initiative and bring assistance to our fellow Americans in Puerto Rico as we do here in Brooklyn,” said Sue Fox, executive director of the Y.

Shorefront Y [3300 Coney Island Ave. at Brightwater Court, in Sheepshead Bay; (718) 646–1444].

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