I need you to give me some money. That should get your attention. It’s not for me, but for a very special kid named Derek DiGregorio. That's him at left.
Derek and his family are best friends with my older brother Howard and his family. They lived across the street from each other in Princeton (until the DiGregorio’s moved). Derek, and his brothers Aaron and Zack have been part of my brother’s family, and the extended Levy family for more than fifteen years.
The thing is...Derek is sick. Very sick.
Derek faces a hideous genetic disease called Ataxia Telangiectasia (AT), which affects three people out of every million and offers the grim prognosis of a life expectancy unlikely to reach much past 20 years. Derek’s dad Steve is a Princeton grad who teaches History and coaches at Nutley High School in New Jersey. His wife Nadia pretty much stays home to take care of the boys, and Derek. In other words, they ain’t rollin’ in dough and the medical bills are going to hit them hard. http://dereksdreams.com/dereks-story-a-message-from-steve-and-nadia-digregorio
But that’s only if they don’t find a cure. Derek, his family, and their friends are not giving in to this opponent. Instead, they have together created Derek’s Dreams, a group dedicated to raising the awareness and resources necessary to combat Ataxia Telangiectasia.
The group’s goal is twofold. First, there are the needs of Derek himself, which will only increase during the next few years and which will make normal day-to-day life difficult. Second, there is the more global desire to attack the disease itself, so that future children and families can have a better chance against Ataxia Telangiectasia. This will involve working with government agencies and private organizations to fund greater research and support efforts.
Here’s what you need to do:
• Go to this website and make a donation (http://dereksdreams.com/)
Another thing you can do:
- If you like, there is a fundraising dinner on Wednesday April 21, 2010 from 6:30-10:30 at “Nanina’s in the Park” in Belleville , NJ.
I plan to attend. It would be great if any of you could join me. There will be a cool silent auction with items donated from a lot of athletes including a bunch of folks associated with the Princeton basketball/football/baseball community like John Thompson, Craig Robinson, and Jason Garrett.