Weekly Feature

2011-05-26 / Lifestyles

East Fest!

East Senior holds benefit for girls stricken with cancer
by KRISTEN KOTZ Reporter

Senior Emily Borodzik was diagnosed with leukemia in March. Senior Emily Borodzik was diagnosed with leukemia in March. Members of the West Seneca School District are coming together to hold a benefit for two girls in the community who recently have been diagnosed with cancer.

On Tuesday, May 31, students and teachers at West Seneca East High School are holding a benefit for Emily Borodzik and Alicia Torrell, two members of the East community who have been diagnosed with leukemia.

The event will take place from 2 to 6 p.m. at the East Senior football field, 4760 Seneca St., West Seneca. It will feature free live music, a KanJam tournament, a free minute-to-win-it competition, karaoke, food, a dunk tank and a basket auction.

A $5 donation is being requested, with all the proceeds to be distributed between the two affected families to help offset medical bills. Tickets are available presale by calling 677-3300, ext. 4200, or 677-3300, ext. 4178. They will also be available for purchase at the door.

Alicia Torrell, a 2009 graduate of East Senior High School, was diagnosed with leukemia in January. Alicia Torrell, a 2009 graduate of East Senior High School, was diagnosed with leukemia in January. Torrell was diagnosed with leukemia in January. She graduated from East Senior in 2009. She also worked full time at Walgreens as a beauty adviser before she was diagnosed.

She had been admitted to Mercy Hospital for stomach pains, and it was discovered she had appendicitis. The next day, doctors noticed that her blood was not clotting properly. She was taken to Roswell Park Cancer Institute to begin treatment. Torrell currently receives treatment two to three times a week at Roswell.

Her mother, Beth, is working at home while she cares for her daughter and is grateful for the support she has received from the community.

“I think it’s wonderful,” she said. “It’s great that the kids have really stepped up and committed to something like that. It shows there is a lot of caring children and faculty that go to the school.”

She described her daughter as very feisty, happy and energetic. She added that the family’s health insurance will pay for about 80 percent of the teen’s treatment costs.

Kerri Krueger, one of the teachers at East Senior who helped plan the benefit, had Alicia Torrell as a student and said she was a joy to have in class.

“She was always a bright, sunny personality in the classroom,”

Krueger said.

In addition to the event planned at East Senior, Torrell’s family and friends are holding a fundraiser from 4 to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 4, at the Matthew Glab Post 1477, 1965 Abbott Road, Lackawanna. The family is asking for donations from area businesses for a Chinese auction at the event. Those interested in donating can contact Nicole Torrell at 472-6545 or by email at Torr7255@gmail.com. Emily Borodzik, a senior at East Senior High School, was diagnosed with leukemia in March after becoming ill with flu-like symptoms that wouldn’t go away. While she is currently in remission, she recently suffered a stroke but is recovering remarkably well. Her mother, Annette, attributes this to numerous prayers as well as support the family has received from the community. “I am overwhelmed,” she said. “It’s unbelievable how the kids and teachers are pulling together. They are so supportive.” Emily Borodzik is currently looking forward to attending college in the fall. Nadine Ocasio, a participation in government and U.S. history teacher at East Senior, had Borodzik as a student this year. She described her as a very athletic and bright girl. Borodzik was also a member of the girls varsity lacrosse team at East Senior. For her senior project, she was working on updating the “Freedom Hallway” that honors graduates of East High School who are serving in the armed forces. Krueger added that the two families have been dealt a horrible hand and holding the event is one way to help them during this difficult time.

“I think anything we can do to make their road a little easier is a gift we can give them,” she said.

Ocasio also agreed that holding the event will help take an unnecessary burden off the shoulders of the girls’ family members. “It’s really about coming out and supporting these girls and their families,” she said. email: kkotz@beenews.com

Benefif for
Emily Borodzik
and Alicia Torrell

Tuesday, May 31
2 to 6 p.m.

WHERE: East Senior
football field
4760 Seneca St.
West Seneca

COST: $5 donation

Tickets: 677-3300, ext.
4200, or 677-3300, ext.
4178 also at the door

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