As part of a now-annual tradition, Coney Island Councilmember Mark Treyger once again partnered with local organization Frankie’s Mission and families across the borough to illuminate the shorefront neighborhood’s iconic Parachute Jump gold for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month on Friday, September 8.
“This is a small but important gesture by our community to show these families that they are not alone in their fight against childhood cancer,” said Treyger, who first pushed to light the Parachute Jump gold in September of 2014 as part of the Gold World Project, founded by New Hampshire resident Tony Stoddard, who lost his five-year-old son Cole to Neuroblastoma.
The inaugural lighting came on the heels of officials at the Empire State Building’s refusal to light the iconic fixture gold in honor of Stoddard’s cause.
The Gold World Project, though well-received by landmarks like the Prudential Center, the Peace Bridge and Niagara Falls, has been snubbed by the New York City skyline star three years in a row now, despite the 103-story skyscraper’s willingness to light for such events as the Subway Series, the U.S. Open and even other causes like breast cancer awareness.
“We are thrilled with the help of so many wonderful people, both community families and our elected officials, in raising awareness,” said Bay Ridge resident and founder of Frankie’s Mission Camille Loccisano, whose son Francesco succumbed to childhood cancer just two weeks after his 17th birthday.
Thursday, September 14 marked ten years since Francesco’s passing.
“An special extra thanks to Councilmember Mark Treyger and Assemblymember Pam Harris,” she said.
“I’d like to thank all of the families, residents, elected officials and local leaders, and organizations who joined us tonight to support the young ones and families who have or currently are battling to overcome this tragic killer,” wrote Treyger on Facebook following the lighting, extending thanks as well to his co-sponsors as well as to the 60th Precinct, the New York City Parks Department, Luna Park, the Brooklyn Cyclones, his staff and everyone who lent a hand in bringing the “Go Gold” movement to light.
The Coney Island lighting took place at 7 p.m. at the base of the Parachute Jump, located alongside the Riegelmann Boardwalk near West 19th Street.