Last year, the Miami Dolphins hosted their annual Miami Dolphins Cycling Challenge in the name of former Dolphins great, Jim Mandich. Last year, we here at PhinPhanatic.com joined that cause by donating over $500.00 to the cause in the name of former Miami Dolphins fansite webmaster, Tom Eddie. This year we will be doing the same and once again are asking you to help in any way you can.
Our initial post on this drive stirred memories for one of our readers. Sometimes, more often than not, it’s not a celebrity that loses a battle with cancer, or even someone that in someway you might have come into contact with through a website. Sometimes it is a lot more personal and a lot more closer to home.
It has been only a month since John Laurito, Sr., a father and husband lost his battle with the disease.
Shortly after I posted the information about the drive, I received and Email from his son. John Laurito, Jr. is a Miami Dolphins fan. He is a reader of this site and I am sure many others. He reached out and made a donation in his fathers name for this years drive and I want all of you to know who John Laurito was not because I knew him but because his family did. He wasn’t a celebrity. He was like all of us. A father, a husband, and a son. And to his family he was their world.
John Laurito, Sr. was the youngest of eight children who like many born during the WWII era was brought up in a humble atmosphere where clothes were handed down child to child. He graduated High-school at the age of 18 just like most of us do. From 1959 until his death, he held one job his entire life eventually buying the small business in 1970.
Much like the men of that era, he was a self-made man who’s most important things were his family. His hobbies were his two sons and his wife. John Laurito, Jr. describes his father as soft spoken who built security for his family through hard work. Later in life, the hard work paid off that he was able to afford some of the finer things that life had to offer, affluent to the point of being capable but still humble to know how he got there and fearful that others may perceive him as showing off.
During the last of his life, he was surrounded by those who he cherished the most and was comforted by the knowledge that he had enough to leave his two sons. He lived the rhythm of his own beat. “He was the most dignified man I will ever know”, says his son John. As the end of his battle with cancer neared, as is the case with everyone who suffers from this disease, John Laurito, Sr. was faced with the feeling of being stripped of that dignity by cancer.
I am proud to be his son and when I think of other people suffering the way he did, I get very sad – John Laurito, Jr. in memory of his father.
John Laurito, Sr. October 3, 1941 – June 21st, 2012.
The fight against cancer is not one that will result in never finding a cure. Each year that passes, researchers begin to understand more and more of the causes and more and more of what it will take to cure the cells of cancer. Through years of research and donations that are brought in by drives such as this, researchers have begun to understand the disease more and with each passing year may very well be coming closer to finding a cure.
Cancer is not someone else’s disease. Whether it’s pancreatic, prostate, breast, or lung cancer or a myriad of others, it affects all of us in some way. While it may not be someone we know personally, someone we do know personally likely has that connection to someone they love or have lost.
All of us can take away something from the story that John Laurito, Jr. shared with us about his father. Together we can help the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center fight this disease. Regardless of public opinion, the Miami Dolphins lead the NFL in it’s charity services to the community of Miami and on the national stage. The Dolphins do simply accept all charity events to support so when they do and they ask me for my assistance, they have it. And I’m asking you for yours.
Donating to this drive is easy. Simply send a Paypal donation of as little as a dollar to [email protected] or [email protected] and I will put your name on our donations page located under the menu (Charity Donors). You can also join one of our fantasy football leagues where a portion of the 25.00 league fee is added to the charity pot. Your name will be added to the list as well. To join a league, simply send $25.oo VIA Paypal to [email protected]
The Miami Dolphins Cycling Challenge drive will run now until the last week of October so that the money can be added prior to the event on November 3rd and 4th.
God willing, those of you who have never suffered the loss of a loved one to this disease, will never have to. But please don’t wait until someone does to realize how important these types of drives are. Helping now can prevent something later.
Our drive this year may officially be in the name of Tom Eddie but it will also be in the name of John Laurito, Sr. and all of the other men, women, and children who have lost and won there battles with this disease.