Team NGF Raises $ for LLS

By Christine Berardi

Anupa Jacob and her children join National Grid Foundation Executive Director Edward White, Kelly Rubbins, Pamela Foca and Christine Berardi at the Light the Night event.

One lantern glows. Many lanterns shine. Thousands of lanterns brighten the night sky at the Light the Night events sponsored by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS).

Proceeds from the annual event supported by local LLS chapters across the country help advance the organization’s mission to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life for patients and their families.

Team National Grid Foundation volunteered and participated at the Long Island Light the Night event held October 19 at Eisenhower Park in Westbury, NY. Foundation employees, National Grid colleagues, family and friends joined together and raised $6,500 toward the already $1.4 million in donations for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. A final total has not been reported as fundraising continued until the end of 2019.

“National Grid Foundation and National Grid are extremely proud to come together in support of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society,” said Ed White, executive director, National Grid Foundation. “Light the Night event is special because it brings everyone together for the same purpose – to improve lives and destroy blood cancers.”

Illuminated 3-D inspirational words including “love”, “courage”, “support”, “light”, “hope” and “cure” were placed across the field where participants gathered before the walk. Family and friends enjoyed delicious food and took photos in the photo booth while kids played in the bounce houses and had their faces painted by volunteer artists. Walkers carried illuminated lanterns in three colors: white lanterns by survivors; red lanterns by supporters; gold lanterns by those walking in memory of loved ones lost to cancer.

After the sun set and Event Emcee Tony Makrides and Suffolk County Sheriff Errol D. Toulon completed their speeches, all walkers shared a moving and inspirational moment. The stadium lights were turned off and the night sky was illuminated by all the lanterns. Emcee Makrides asked those battling cancer to go up to the front of the stage and form a circle with their white lanterns. Family members and friends of those who have passed away, formed a circle with their yellow lanterns around the survivors. All supporters with red lanterns surrounded both groups to show support and to bring light to the darkness of cancer.

In support of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night event, more than 6,500 walkers gathered at Eisenhower Park to celebrate, honor and remember those touched by cancer. With their lanterns shining bright, walkers completed the 1.3-mile route through the neighborhood and headed back to the park for a fireworks display. Now that’s lighting up the sky!


  • Rudolph and Antoinette Roesler de Villiers started a fundraising and education organization in 1949 five years after their son Robbie died of leukemia at age 16. The Foundation named in their son’s name later became The Leukemia Society.
  • The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s (LLS) mission is to cure blood cancers with pioneering cancer research and treatments and provide patient support services.
  • Leukemia, lymphoma, myeloma and other blood cancers affect bone marrow, blood cells, lymph nodes and other parts of the lymphatic system.
  • LLS helped advance 34 of the 39 blood cancer treatment options approved by the FDA in 2017 and 2018.
  • 2 million Americans live with blood cancer
  • Every 3 minutes someone is diagnosed; every 9 minutes someone dies of blood cancer
  • Five-year survival rates for all blood cancers have doubled, tripled and even quadrupled since the 1960s and 1970s due to advanced treatment therapies.

About National Grid Foundation:

National Grid Foundation was created to enhance the quality of life across its grant making territory. The Foundation’s ongoing challenge is to create opportunities for solutions to educational and environmental issues. Its objective is based on the principle that giving people the tools to build hope is an essential ingredient in the development of individuals, families and communities. Since its inception in December of 1998, the Foundation now in its 21st year has granted nearly $27 million to local community organizations.

To find out more about the National Grid Foundation visit:

To view the latest issue of Destiny: Destiny Q4 2019


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