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ebrooklyn media/Photo by John Alexander
ebrooklyn media/Photo by John Alexander
Bridge Pharmacy workers Stavroula Kotsanis and Iljana Dielli; Pharmacist Stephen Cilento, Natalie Grace Quaglione, John Quaglione and Oliva Quaglione.

On Wednesday, May 23, Bay Ridge’s Bridge Pharmacy presented John Quaglione, co-chairperson of the Brooklyn Committee of the March of Dimes, with a check for $500.

This is the second year that the pharmacy has collaborated with Quaglione and his family team, “Team Natalie Grace,” and have hosted apin-up campaign, encouraging their customers to donate $1 at the time of their purchase to support March of Dimes’ mission to lead the fight for the health of all mothers and babies.

In an area brimming with multiple Rite Aid, CVS and Duane Reade pharmacies, Bridge Pharmacy, 8912 Third Avenue, is a wonderful throwback to days gone by, when the pharmacist behind the counter greeted you warmly and knew your family members by name.

Maria Georgakopoulos and Stephen Cilento are two of those pharmacists who pride themselves on knowing their customers and treating them like family.

“Kudos to all who take time from their lives and all their personal agenda to help support causes like the March of Dimes,” Georgakopoulos told this paper. “It sometimes just takes a second to reach in your pocket for a dollar or two, but the actual act of wanting to give is priceless. I’m grateful to belong to a community of loving, caring and giving people. Knowing that we can make a difference, even if it’s small, makes it worth it.”

Quaglione is delighted with the pharmacy’s support. “The money will go towards helping to end prematurity and leading the fight for the health of all moms and babies,” Quaglione said. “This year, Team Natalie Grace has so far raised $7,000 to support the March of Dimes and their efforts.”

Quaglione, deputy chief of staff to State Senator Marty Golden and his wife Kerry Izzo Quaglione, assistant principal of P.S. 127, organized “Team Natalie,” named after their oldest daughter who was born two months prematurely in 2011.

Although Natalie is a healthy young girl now, the Quagliones are aware that other children and their families who aren’t as fortunate need the help and support of the March of Dimes.

“For my family and I, the March of Dimes is important to our lives because my first daughter was born eight weeks early,” said Quaglione. “And for my second baby, my wife was treated by medicine developed in the March of Dimes research labs. We are blessed to have two beautiful and healthy daughters, and that is why we have committed ourselves to the fight to end premature births.”

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