About Dee

Dee is the first child to her parents, big sister to her three  siblings, a grandchild, a niece, a cousin, and most recently, and  perhaps her favorite spot in the family tree, Aunt Dee to her six nieces  and nephews. Dee was born with a physical disability, Spina Bifida,  which resulted in the medical community considering her a ‘fragile  infant’. She knew better and throughout her life Dee, with grace and  determination, built the life she wanted to live. 

Dee grew up in Oyster Bay, Long Island and attended public school  there beginning in first grade. Teachers, principals, and classmates all  welcomed Dee with open arms and created a nurturing and inclusive  environment where Dee was a part of everything that her school had to  offer. Dee’s braces on her legs, and the fact that she couldn’t run very  well made her the perfect candidate for being the pitcher during the  baseball games. As Dee got older we all loved going to the high school  plays to see the creative ways they incorporated Dee into the dance  scenes by positioning her behind a couch so she only had to move her  arms to appear as though she was dancing with the rest of the cast. Dee  did what she loved, setting and reaching her goals at every turn, taking  each challenge in stride, and never letting her disability serve as a  barrier to her dreams. 

In College she pursued a path that would prepare her to help children  and young adults succeed in school and work. She had groups in after  school activities, ran programs to help people earn a GED, learn to  write a resume or have an interview. As the people had taught her to get  past hurdles she was doing the same. 

Many times surgery interrupted her life but even in that setting she  thrived. Doctors, nurses, rehabilitation specialists, and all the people  involved in her recovery, were totally committed to getting her back to  her best.  Her indomitable spirit was infectious and she had  longstanding relationships with those people. 

And so, with Dee’s strength and courage in mind, we have created this  foundation in her name, in the hope that we can help individuals,  communities, and organizations embrace all of its members to create  fulfilling and meaningful lives.