A Wantagh family will be honored as The Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island’s Family of the Year at the organization's ‘Purple Diamond Gala" taking place Thursday night at Carlyle on the Green in Bethpage.
The Garske family of Wantagh will be recognized for the amazing obstacles they and their 17-year-old son, Chris, who has epilepsy, have been able to overcome as well as their active advocacy within the epilepsy community. Chis Garske and his family are regular participants in The Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island's support groups. Garske, a junior, was selected by the foundation to participate in the National Epilepsy Walk in Washington D.C. this past March and also represented the organization as an advocate to lobby on behalf of his peers with congress.
"It is a bog honor for us because we are so passionate about raising awareness for Epilepsy," said Chris's mother Jean Garske. "The Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island has been great to us."
"They are a very personable, smart and a hard-working family," said Tom Hopkins, Executive Director of The Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island. "They are very aggressive about searching out the best treatments for their son Chris."
Garske has a seizure dog that stays by his side and alerts him and his family whenever he is about to have a seizure, which enables him and his family to be best prepare when a seizure arises. The seizure dog, who will be attending Thursday's gala, also allows him a greater sense of independence. Garske credited the Wantagh School District with being very accommodating of her son's needs since he was first diagnosed with epilepsy.
Thursday night's gala that the Garske family is being honored at is being held in conjunction with November’s Epilepsy Awareness Month. Garske said her son is excited to meet New York Knicks star forward Carmelo Anthony, who will be attending the gala with his wife, LaLa Vazquez Anthony. The NBA All Star's wife will be recognized as the Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island's Community Leadership Award Honoree for her involvement with the organization and support of the epilepsy community.
For more information about The Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island, visit the organization's website or call 516-739-7733.