A community tradition for 37 years, the 62nd Precinct Community Council filled St. Finbar’s Msgr. Scanlon Center (1839 Bath Avenue) for the last time as the Michael J. Ferraro Community Service Awards – given to dedicated students, chosen by their schools – took place on Tuesday, June 14.
The service awards shared the spotlight with the American Heart Association (AHA) Heart Saver Hero Awards, given to outstanding EMTs, paramedics, FDNY personnel and Bensonhurst Volunteer Ambulance Service (BVAS) members.
Beginning the evening with the AHA awards, Captain Anthony Sanseverino, the 62nd Precinct’s commanding officer, took to the front of the room to congratulate and commend the recipients on all of their hard work.
“If you think about what Michael J. Ferraro was about, we think about the word community,” said Sanseverino. “We see everyone that’s here — the auxiliaries, the first responders, the volunteers — everybody here tonight is a part of that and it’s everyone’s participation in this community that makes us as successful as we are.”
While the Ferraro family informed the crowd that this would be the last year the awards would take place – mainly because getting schools to participate has become increasingly difficult over the years – they thanked the community council for continuing the tradition.
“Michael truly believed that a neighborhood’s quality of life can be dictated by the people who live in that community,” the family said of Ferraro who was one of the 62nd Precinct Community Council’s first presidents and president of the Boards of Trade for 86th Street, 18th Avenue and Bensonhurst.
“This is the 37th year that we’ve been doing this and it’s been a great joy,” Louis Trimboli, president of the 62nd Community Council, said to the crowd. “Your child is here because [their] school has told us that the child is a special person who does special things to make his or her school a better place, which, in turn makes our community a better place.”
This year’s 23 award recipients, who range from elementary school to high school age, were Kyle Montgomery of Catherine Laboure, Bayta Lust of Tiferes Miriam, Leevia Acquaviva of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Kayla Vazquez of St. Athanasius School, Ralph Musolino of St. Peter’s Catholic Academy, Maureen DeGregorio of Bishop Kearney High School, Loren Carbonaro of New Utrecht High School, Marisol Toxqui of I.S. 96 Seth Low, Melina Cortez of I.S. 227 Shallow, Odalys Mesa of I.S. 228 Boody, Jessica Li of I.S./P.S. 229, Iris Sllogu of I.S. 281 Cavallaro, Jasmin Diaz of I.S. 280 Brooklyn Studio School, Kaelynn George of P.S. 101, Angela Lin of P.S. 112, Timut Khakimov of P.S. 128, Laia Hourani of P.S./I.S. 163, Firdavs Mamadaliyev of P.S. 177, Anthony Daleo of P.S. 186, Dennis Mizhquiri of P.S. 200, Jenna Mazza of P.S. 204, Skylar Smith of P.S. 205 and Eric Fiorito of P.S. 247.