LENOX HOSPITAL FUNDS EMPLOYEE HURRICANE RELIEF
Lenox Hospital held its annual Autumn Ball on Monday evening, only this time the money raised did not benefit the hospital itself, but its employees. North Shore LIJ Health System announced last week that proceeds from the fundraising gala, which was held at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Midtown, would be donated to the health system’s newly established Emergency Employee Resource Center, an initiative created to assist employees whose families and homes were harmed by Hurricane Sandy.
“We as a health system can take great pride in how we responded during the storm,” said North Shore-LIJ President and CEO Michael Dowling. “Our ability to meet the needs of communities we serve throughout New York City and Long Island and assist other New York area hospitals in distress was nothing short of remarkable. While Sandy has passed, much work remains. That includes taking care of our own employees, who continued to work even though many lost their homes, cars and personal possessions in the storm.”
North Shore-LIJ is a 16-hospital system that employs over 44,000 people in New York City and Long Island. The fundraiser honored Nobel Peace Prize recipient Elie Wiesel and included a performance by singer Cyndi Lauper.
HALLOWEEN SURVIVES IN EVACUATION ZONE
Flood damage was not the only scary thing last Wednesday at the Stanley M. Isaacs Houses, a public housing complex along the East River at East 93rd Street. A bunch of ghosts and goblins were out, too, with their parents and big bags of candy.
Despite a mandatory evacuation notice from the New York City Housing Authority before Hurricane Sandy, many residents stayed in their homes after heat and elevators were shut down. Uprooted trees and debris-ridden streets made Halloween look unlikely, but parents in the buildings decided to let their children enjoy the holiday nonetheless.
“It’s good for the kids,” resident Patrick Fraser told NY City Lens. “They don’t need to worry about what’s going on in the world right now.”
Parents walked door to door with kids whose costumes included witches, fairies, Batman, Spider-Man and a bumblebee. Elsewhere in the city, many Halloween happenings were canceled, including the Village’s annual Halloween Parade, the largest public Halloween event in the country.
LOCAL MAN SAVES TAXI DRIVER FROM DROWNING
Jon Candelaria braved Hurricane Sandy last week to pull a taxi driver out of rushing floodwater. The 25-year-old was sipping coffee in his family’s Upper East Side apartment on Monday during the storm when he saw an SUV taxi driving in water on a closed street. A sudden surge lifted the vehicle, then pulled it into deep water.
“I acted on a reaction. I didn’t think of my well-being,” he told CNN of his heroic feat that followed. He rushed outside into waist-high water wearing basketball shorts and a jacket and waded to the vehicle. Wind, water and a rapid loss of strength prevented him from opening the SUV’s door at first, but he told the driver that they were going to work together, and they managed to open the door on the count of three.
“As soon as I got to three, the wind just stopped for that one second,” Candelaria told CNN. “It was like something from a movie.”
The driver left the scene without identifying himself. The rescue was captured from above, though, on a nearby security camera.
“At the end of the day, it wasn’t about what I was getting in return,” Candelaria said after joking with CNN that he should be granted unlimited cab rides in the city. “I couldn’t just stand there and do nothing. If I knew that this was going on in front of me, I would have done it for anyone.”
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