Giving Back

Morgan’s FunDay Raises Money for a Good Cause

Jennifer Degl, left, presents Dr. Boriana Parvez, a neonatologist at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, with the Lily Pedro Foundation Award. Credits: Photo courtesy of Jennifer Degl

MAHOPAC, N.Y. - The second annual Morgan’s FunDay, a fundraiser for the Morgan Leary Vaughan Fund, was held at the Mahopac Golf and Beach Club last month to raise awareness and money for research in necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC).

NEC is a disease that develops when the tissue in the inner lining of the small or large intestine becomes damaged and begins to die and causes the intestine to become inflamed. In severe cases, a hole may form in the wall of the intestine and bacteria can cause widespread infection. This is considered a medical emergency. The disease can develop in any newborn within two weeks after birth. However, it’s most common in premature infants, accounting for 60 to 80 percent of cases. 

At Morgan’s FunDay, the Morgan Leary Vaughan Fund honored Dr. Boriana Parvez, a neonatologist at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network, and director of development at the New York Milk Bank, with the Lily Pedro Award for Excellence.

Sign Up for E-News

Morgan’s FunDay was organized and hosted by Jennifer Degl, a Mahopac resident and teacher, and author of “From Hope to Joy: A Memoir of a Mother’s Determination and Her Micro Preemie’s Struggle to Beat the Odds,” with help from the Morgan Leary Vaughan Fund, whose mission is to promote public awareness about NEC and the potentially devastating effects it can have on preemies and their families, and to advance research to prevent, diagnose, treat, and ultimately, cure it. 

“As a mother of a surviving micro preemie and a member of the Morgan Leary Vaughan Fund’s Board of Directors, I feel that I must do what I can to help future premature babies and their families find as the success we did,” Degl said. “This year we were honored to present the Lily Pedro Award for Excellence to Dr. Boriana Parvez for the outstanding work she has done in creating the New York Milk Bank, a donor milk program for New York State mothers. This program is important because of the effects that breast milk has on reducing cases of NEC in premature babies."

Established in 2016, the Lily Pedro Award for Excellence award recognizes individuals or organizations who exemplify the mission, vision, and ideals of the Morgan Leary Vaughan Fund. It is named in memory of Lily Marie Pedro, infant daughter of Katherine and Frank Pedro, who lost her battle with NEC in 2012.

The Morgan Leary Vaughan Fund (Morgan’s Fund) is an all-volunteer, public charity dedicated to promoting public awareness about NEC. Named after Morgan, it celebrates his survival, courage and strength.

Morgan and his twin brother were born at 28 weeks, one day gestation—nearly three months early—each weighing less than 2.5 pounds. At four days old, Morgan developed NEC and lost approximately 20 percent of his small intestine. Morgan not only survived but also has thrived since his bout with NEC. This is his family’s way of paying it forward.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Like

Sign Up for E-News


Cuomo's Real Fiscal Record

Since Gov. Cuomo has been in charge, 194,000 people have moved out of the 50 counties north of us. Even though we are being told that unemployment upstate has dropped, it is NOT because more people are finding work; it is because they have stopped looking for work, according to studies. So, as on the national level, they are not counted. The governor has touted that the real truth is unemployment ...

Unfit to Govern

If my father were alive today, just the mention of the current Republican Party and Donald Trump would leave him utterly disgusted.  A truck driver and union man (with a charitable soul), he was a progressive for more than 50 years before that term became fashionable.  He believed that the purpose of government was to make life for its citizens better, not harder; and that the power of ...

Who Are the Real Robots?

What is the meaning of life?

Search me, but where cosmic queries are concerned, here’s a new one: If humans are becoming as easily manipulated by digital impulses as are robots, is that a form of evolution or devolution?

We marvel at the onset of artificial intelligence (AI) as if it’s right around the corner. It’s not. It’s here, painting each of us into a corner of ...

Sleeping with the Enemy

Whenever my husband goes out of town, I cheat. I figure, what he doesn’t know, won’t hurt him, and since there’s no way for him to find out that I cheated, why not have some fun while he’s out of town?

Do I feel guilty about this? Maybe a bit. But only because I know that my indiscretions may eventually catch up with me in the end. You see, I don’t just have one ...

Upcoming Events

Sat, August 19, 9:00 AM

Jefferson Valley Mall , Yorktown Heights

Yorktown Farmers Market

Arts & Entertainment Business & Finance Food & Drink Giving Back Green Health & Wellness

Sat, August 19, 12:30 PM

Mahopac Library, Mahopac

SAT Math Prep Class


Sat, August 19, 5:00 PM

Mahopac Chamber Park, Mahopac

Evening in the Piazza

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink