Braunstein & Carrozza Thank Community for Donations to the 18th Annual Valentines for Vets Gift Drive
February 19, 2014

Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein (D-Bayside) and the Law Offices of Ann-Margaret Carrozza, along with co-sponsors Dr. William M. Duke and Community Board 11, organized our community's 18th annual Valentines for Vets gift drive to honor our hospitalized veterans for the sacrifices they have made to defend our nation.

Thousands of donations of candy, hand-written cards, new clothing items, playing cards, puzzles and toiletries were received from over 20 schools, as well as civic and religious organizations, senior clubs, and many local residents. The gifts were delivered on Valentine's Day by Assemblyman Braunstein and his staff to the hospitalized men and women at the St. Albans Community Living Center of the VA New York Harbor Healthcare System and the New York State Veterans Home at St. Albans.

"I want to sincerely thank everyone, especially our local public and private schools, for their overwhelming support for our Valentines for Vets gift drive. These donations helped to brighten the day of hundreds of veterans by showing them that we care about them and appreciate their sacrifices," said Assemblyman Braunstein.

"We asked the residents of Northeast Queens to consider making a hospitalized veteran their Valentine this year, and they answered that appeal by generously donating thousands of items for our hospitalized heroes," said Ann-Margaret Carrozza.

"Additionally, I want to thank Dr. William Duke and Community Board 11 for their participation in the gift drive," said Braunstein.

Among the schools and community organizations that contributed to this drive:

Alley Pond Environmental Center, Bayside Community Library, Bayside Hills Civic Association, Bayside Kiwanis Club, Divine Wisdom Catholic Academy of Bayside & Douglaston, Girl Scout Troop 4563, Greater Whitestone Taxpayers Civic Association, Holy Trinity School, Immanuel Lutheran Conron Girl Scout Troop 4-725 & 4-772, IS 25, Lutheran School of Flushing & Bayside, Mary's Nativity - St. Ann Saturday For Kids, MS 67, MS 158, MS 294: Bell Academy, Our Lady of the Snows School, Patti Schmidt Dance & Exercise Center, PS 32, PS 94 Girl Scout Troop 4237, PS 98, PS 107, PS 115, PS 159, PS 169, PS 184, PS 193, PS 209, PS 811, Queens College Circle K, Queensboro Hill Community Church, Ridgewood Savings Bank of Bayside and Whitestone, Samuel Field Y MS 158 Beacon Program, St. Kevin Rosary Society, St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church Golden Years Seniors, and the William Spyropoulos Greek-American Day School.

Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein with Victoria Townes, Recreation Assistant at the St. Albans Community Living Center of the VA New York Harbor Healthcare System; and United States Air Force E-5 James Remias, a veteran of the Vietnam War.

Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein; his Chief of Staff David Fischer; Deirdre Samuel, Coordinator of Volunteer Services at the NYS Veterans Home at St. Albans; and United States Navy E-1 Larry McKelton, Secretary of the Resident's Council.

Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein with Girl Scout Troop 4563 and their generous donations.

Gift drive co-sponsor Ann-Margaret Carrozza with Girl Scout Troops 4-725 and 4-772, 8th and 9th Grade Cadettes and Seniors from Whitestone, who collected Valentines and personal items for Veterans and Troop Leader Debe Brady.