HGAR Hosts "Wish Upon a Star" Cocktail Party to Benefit Make-A-Wish Hudson Valley
The Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors is hosting a cocktail party to benefit Make-A-Wish Hudson Valley, which grants the wishes of children diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses. The event is on September 19 at the Clubhouse at Patriot Hills in Stony Point, NY.
This year, 14-year old Anthony Gordon, a “Wish” recipient, will be speaking at the event. Anthony, the grandson of Christine Gordon of BHG Rand Realty in Goshen, was diagnosed with leukemia at the age of 12. Since then, he has had two years of chemotherapy and has one more year of treatments.
Last year, Anthony was granted a $3,500 shopping spree at Palisades Mall in Rockland County. Make-A-Wish sent a limousine to pick up the family and also booked a hotel room for himself, his mother, sister and brother. The family enjoyed dinner, then shopping the following day. Anthony was able to buy a lap top, big flat screen TV, and clothing. Later, he received a trip to Louisiana a week before the Mardi Gras, and watched them set up for the event. The nurses from Maria Fareri Westchester Children’s hospital served as chaperones.
“He had the best time of his life,” said Christine Gordon. “Because a lot of these children spend months in the hospital, this is a huge deal for their mind and spirit to give them hope that they are getting better, that life can still be good and that people really care about them. I am so grateful for the support this wonderful organization gives to our children.”
Lauren Shields, the daughter of Jeanne Shields of Keller Williams Hudson Valley Realty in New City, was also a “Wish” recipient. “Lauren's journey was not an easy one at all, but Make-A-Wish brought such brightness to a time that had been so dark for so long,” said Jeanne Shields.
Lauren, 13, had been a completely healthy child who somehow developed viral myocarditis and underwent a heart transplant at the age of 8. Following the March 2009 procedure, she suffered a stroke and entered a rehabilitation center in June. “Her goal was to be able to walk to school that September – which she did – and her wish was for a bedroom make-over,” added Jeanne Shields.
The new animal-themed room features zebra stripes on the wall, new furniture, a flat screen TV, and even some new clothes. "I had so much fun working with my ‘wish angels’ on my room makeover,” said Lauren Shields. “Now every morning when I wake up, I think of them and I am so grateful."
After her experience, Lauren actively campaigned for organ donor programs and helped to enact “Lauren’s Law.” This law makes it mandatory for New Yorkers to answer the question about organ donations on their driver’s license. In the past, drivers could ignore the question.
Last year, HGAR raised almost $10,000 for Make-A- Wish® Hudson Valley. “This organization has been making a huge difference in the lives of these children for more than 25 years, and we are so pleased to be able to offer our help,” said Richard Haggerty, HGAR CEO.
Tickets are $60 per person and include a two-hour open bar, three hot food stations, appetizers, passed hors d’oeuvres, coffee and dessert, plus a DJ and dancing. For more information about the event, or to purchase tickets, please call (914) 681-0833.
Since 1986, Make-A-Wish® Hudson Valley has granted more than 2,000 wishes to Hudson Valley children with life-threatening medical conditions. Make-A-Wish® Hudson Valley serves eight counties: Delaware, Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster and Westchester. The organization is currently working on 160 wishes with the average cost of a wish ranging from $7,500 to $10,000.
The Hudson Gateway Association of REALTORS® is a not-for-profit trade association covering over 9,000 real estate professionals doing business in Westchester, Putnam, Rockland, and Orange counties. HGAR is comprised of the former Westchester Putnam Association of REALTORS® (WPAR), Rockland County Board of REALTORS® (RCBR) and Orange County Association of REALTORS® (OCAR).
Mary T. Prenon