In September 2022, the Merrick community lost a beloved friend and neighbor, Richard Capizzi, to glioblastoma. Richie was a loving husband and father, a world-class pastry chef, and the ultimate good cookie. While Richie earned many accolades in his career, he always felt that his greatest accomplishments in life were his children, who always inspired him to give back. As a pastry chef, baker and fundraiser, Richie was critical in helping an organization called Cookies for Kids’ Cancer.
Cookies for Kids’ Cancer all started with 96,000 cookies when 2-year-old Liam Witt was diagnosed with childhood cancer in 2007. Liam’s parents, Larry and Gretchen, were shocked to learn of the lack of effective treatment for pediatric cancers due to lack of funding. They pledged to support the funding of research for safe, more effective treatment for children battling cancer. With the help of 250 volunteers, Gretchen baked and sold 96,000 cookies, raising more than $400,000 for research. Cookies for Kids’ Cancer’s efforts since inception have granted $20 million to pediatric cancer research. As a result, more than 100 research grants have been awarded, leading to 25 new treatments available to kids today.
This month, Cookies for Kids’ Cancer is hosting a campaign called “Be a Good Cookie Merrick” with the goal to raise $100,000, which would fund an entire pediatric medical research grant in Richie’s name. Show up for the community and participate in a bake sale on Saturday, September 30, and a cocktail gala on the same day. beagoodcookie.org