A Smithtown student recently took a stand against childhood cancer — in the form of a lemonade stand.
Dominick Chiuchiolo, a second-grader at Tackan Elementary School in Nesconset, raised nearly $12,000 this summer as part of a seven-day challenge to benefit Pennsylvania-based Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer. The foundation was created by the parents of a Connecticut girl named Alexandra Scott, who died of neuroblastoma in 2004.
Dominick sold more than 20 gallons of lemonade and clocked in more than 15 hours running the stand in front of his home and at the St. James Farmers Market in June. He raised the funds in honor of his mother Valerie, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at the age of 5.
"I was screaming," Dominick, 7, said of when he realized the amount raised. "The reason why I did it was to find a cure and end childhood cancer.”
Dominick's original goal was $8,000, as he read that is the amount needed to fund one month of childhood cancer research. His family, though, encouraged him to start small and try to collect between $500 and $1,000.
"His response was, 'Why would I want to only raise that little?' " Valerie said. "He not only met the goal, he crushed it."
Outside of school, Dominick plays baseball and studies karate and Spanish.