Smiles for Stefani

Event Date

Sat, Oct 4, 2014


Ronkonkoma, NY

About This Activity

Fundraising event for 6 year old with cancer. Read her story:


All we ever want is to believe our children will live a healthy and happy life. On February 5, 2009 we saw our world crumble when we found out that Stefani, our youngest of 3, had a brain tumor. Stefani has been battling Brain Cancer ever since. She has endured years of failed chemo treatments but through it all continues to smile. The hope for Stefani is that there will be more treatment options available in the future, and that one day she will be Cancer free.

Stefani was born on April 1, 2008. When she debuted into the world via a c-section I finally felt that my family was complete. Her angelic face, and calm demeanor was refreshing and much needed from the craziness of having a 3 year old daughter Arianna and a 2 year old son, Benjamin. Stefani was developing and growing and hitting many of her early milestones until about 4 months old. We then began to see gross motor skills taking a back seat. Stefani was not able to roll over, push to hands and knees and push to sit up or get into positions to crawl. The pediatrician felt that that was OK and never made a big deal about it. When Stefani was about 6 1/2 months old she developed a double ear infection and a nasty cold...for 2 months straight we were at the doctor's office every week. I kept saying something else is going on, but they didn't have any "medical proof" to go on.

On Dec. 26, 2008 we took Stefani back to the pediatrician and at this time I brought to the doctors attention that not only was Stefani still sick, but she was not able to turn her head to the left and would turn her whole body as one unit. She was diagnosed with torticolis. Torticolis at almost 9 months old? We took it into our own hands to get Early Intervention involved for which she was approved for PT. Next we saw a neurologist and an orthopedic surgeon. Both doctors had given scripts for an MRI but the appointments were set for 3 and 4 weeks later. They believed this was not an emergency and Stefani could wait. Stefani began to deteriorate showing signs of lower lip drop and excessive tiredness, coupled with hours of endless crying. With the push of our EI case manager, we headed to Schneider, now Cohen Children's Hospital. She was admitted to the hospital and in the morning given an MRI.

We had to fight like hell to stay and to get a CAT scan. They were sending us home with Neurologist names and numbers to follow up with. After the CAT scan about an hour passed and the news that we feared the most was placed before us...Stefani had a brain tumor. After being admitted to the hospital, Stefani was given an MRI which showed the tumor on her Brain Stem and in her 4th Ventrical. She was scheduled for surgery on Feb 10, 2009 to hopefully be able to resect some of the tumor. Her surgery could have taken up to 8 hours, but when the phone rang after 3, I knew they weren't able to remove anything. Stefani started chemo a few weeks later to treat a cervicomedullary glioma (astrocytoma) which extended from C5 Vertebrae through the medulla and into the 4th Ventrical.

We pray that our angel face will be okay, and that one day she will be able to tell her courageous story.

Event schedule and times

Saturday Oct 4th, 2014

Lake Ronkonkoma 

8:30am: Fun Run

9:00am: Race Start 

The race is 4 miles and should take between 30-60 min depending on your level. 

The Fun Run is 1 mile and is open to kids, strollers, etc.

Stay tuned for further details regarding parking, etc.

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