Education

Elizabeth High School Students Raise Thousands to Fight Cancer

f60484baa10e04bf7235_IMG_0321.jpg
Left to right: Jessica Romero, Guido Morsella, Principal Cummings, Mayor Bollwage, BOE President Charlene Bathelus, Daniel Faldraga, and Tom O'Donnell   Credits: Fran Sullivan
7e99e260f6064c520fad_IMG_0348__1_.jpg
6c8cfce82cd735dfcd70_IMG_0335.jpg
e0fbc06892441344975b_IMG_0329.jpg
8456578308279c1e5adf_IMG_0327.jpg
6345c67a1011e761ac2c_IMG_0325.jpg
00cfa6a0c48725fe6e34_IMG_0323.jpg
defde551de7fc414fdbd_IMG_0322.jpg
c276cfacac24dfae9b4e_IMG_0315.jpg
fd97bea7dfbda1c61796_IMG_0312.jpg
41ac990cc84f6cdb77eb_IMG_0311.jpg
023acdb9df6453fa785b_IMG_0309__1_.jpg
2bfb7db71eb8ed73e82f_IMG_0304.jpg
c69ce63a311b0054c056_IMG_0301.jpg
f60484baa10e04bf7235_IMG_0321.jpg

ELIZABETH, NJ – Some were there because they felt it was a good cause, others because it hit close to home, but 238 Upper Academy students were ready to Relay for Life, March 18-19.

Relay for Life is a national fundraiser for cancer research where teams take turns walking a track overnight. TAPinto supported the project by being its media sponsor. This is the first year the event has been held at Elizabeth High School. “The students came up with the idea,” explained Principal Michael Cummings. “They wanted to do something and chose this project.”

To participate, each student had to raise $100. By the start of the relay, they raised nearly $25,000. “They are excited about it because it is their first year,” said Alice Debowski, an economics teacher and one of the event’s 35 chaperones. “It is hard for a school to start something new, but I feel these students really rally around, so it is not so surprising that they really put everything into it.”

Sign Up for E-News

For seniors Hammad Akbar, Oscar Varnos, and Joao Vieira, members of the Cancer & Furious team, the relay was a good cause. For Karla Amdeli, it was personal. “My dad had cancer, so this really hit close to home,” she said. “I was so young and couldn’t really help, so this is my way of helping.”

Walking with the students were a number of cancer survivors and their family and friends. Survivor Steven Evangelista, the assistant coordinator for the Future Leaders program, was there with his friend Azalea Brazero who was “supporting him all the way.” Her mother, Nellie Gonzalez-Brazero, a stroke survivor was there, too. “I know what it is like to feel like you have support.”

The teams were sent off at a rally where they heard from Mayor Christian Bollwage, Principal Cummings, among others, but it was teary eyed Board of Education President Charlene Bathelus who tugged everyone’s heart strings. “I am a caretaker,” she said, wiping her eyes with a tissue. “My father has cancer. Only a survivor knows what we go through every, every day. I am here to thank all of you for what you are doing. I really had to be here. Whether you know someone or not, what you are doing affects a community.”

As she left the stage, she was greeted by a standing ovation from all 238 students, their families, and friends.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Elizabeth

Upcoming Events

Mon, February 26, 4:30 PM

Union Public Library, Union

Black History Month Bingo

Education Food & Drink

Tue, February 27, 11:00 AM

Vauxhall Library, Vauxhall

Toddler & Pre-K Program

Education

Wed, February 28, 11:30 AM

The Arc Kohler School, Mountainside

OPEN HOUSE at The Arc Kohler School for Students ...

Education Health & Wellness Other

Union County Freeholders Partner in Two Upcoming Hiring Events

February 17, 2018

ELIZABETH, NJ – The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders have announced two hiring event opportunities coming up with Griswold Home Care of Union County and the United Airlines “Summer Assist” youth program.

The first event is with Griswold Home Care of Union County. They are a privately owned, non-medical home care company and are looking for Certified Home Health Aides ...

“Hidden in Plain Sight” - A Presentation Centered Around a Teen’s Bedroom 

ROSELLE, NJ - Elizabeth Parents, grandparents, caregivers, when it comes to your children and drugs, do you know where to look? Do you know what you are looking for? You may be surprised at what is "Hidden in Plain Sight."

The Roselle Everett Hatcher Prevention Coalition and Prevention Links invite all parents, grandparents, caregivers, teachers and other adults from the city of ...

At Westfield High School, Student Says ‘It’s Almost Normal to Juul Here’

February 16, 2018

Editor’s note: This story about the rise in teen e-cigarette use, written by Westfield High School student Greta Frontero, originally ran in the Jan. 8 edition of WHS student newspaper Hi’s Eye.

WESTFIELD, NJ — A 12th-grade Westfield High School female said she doesn’t bring her Juul to school, but will use someone else’s if the opportunity ...

Indictment Handed Down in Millburn Carjacking

February 21, 2018

TRENTON, NJ – An indictment was handed down in the November carjacking in Millburn where a 13-year old girl was allegedly grabbed by the neck and the suspect threatened to kill her. 

The 11-count state grand jury indictment charges Ahmed Anthony, 30, of Newark with conspiracy, carjacking, robbery and making terroristic threats among other charges. The conspiracy in the first-degree ...

Democratic Party Would Be Making a Big Mistake by Not Recognizing Colleen Mahr's Talents

February 19, 2018

Dear Editor:

Mayor Colleen Mahr has been a valuable friend to the Township of Cranford. Whether it’s offering advice and assistance during devastating flood cleanup, supporting the Mayor's Council on the Rahway River, or her insight and assistance in meeting our affordable housing obligations, Mayor Mahr is always there for Cranford.

Colleen’s fairness and integrity is ...

'What Stays' exposes family secrets and lies

‘What Stays’ exposes family secrets, resentment and lies

By Liz Keill

SUMMIT, NJ – In an original play by Laura Ekstrand and Jason Szamreta, the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre has provided an enlightening, funny and heart-felt view of family foibles.

Ekstrand has said that the germ of the play came from conversations with the ensemble members of the troupe, based on ...

Reminder: Free Wellness Program for Union County Military Women

February 22, 2018

All Union County women with military service – veterans, active duty and reserve – are invited to join “Boots 2 Heels,” a free event designed to foster wellness and connect women with resources and guidance for empowerment. Boots 2 Heels will be held on Saturday, February 24 at the Westfield Armory, located at 500 Rahway Avenue in Westfield.

The event is free but ...