Written by John Owens, firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 14 February 2014 11:15
With the arrival of Valentine’s Day, let’s consider those you love: What would happen to your family, especially your kids, if you died today? That’s the question that Steve Giacobello’s family has been answering since he was killed this past September.
The 45-year-old Westbury resident and 20-year Town of Oyster Bay employee was collecting garbage in the hamlet of Oyster Bay’s business district when a driver, reportedly blinded by the sun, struck him.
“My brother’s girls are going to need as much help as they can get in the future,” Giacobello’s younger brother, Mike, said of his nieces, Stephanie, 14, and 13-year-old twins Heather and Michelle, who were left behind, in addition to Angela, Steve’s wife of 15 years.
With that in mind, Mike and his wife, Lisa, are organizing a fundraiser at Mulcahy’s in Wantagh on Saturday, March 8 from 4 to 8 p.m. The $50 ticket buys an open bar and buffet. There also will be a variety of auctions.
John Theissen, the noted Long Island philanthropist, who will serve as M.C. at the event, has helped guide the Giacobellos in how to organize the fundraiser.
“Lisa has been going to businesses and asking them for donations for the auction,” said Mike. “And we’ve received so much help.”
Among the items to be auctioned are a CD autographed by Paul McCartney, a guitar, a bicycle, a fishing trip, hotel stays and restaurant gift certificates.
“We’re going to put the money into a collge fund so they can have it when they need it,” Mike said of the girls, who are students at Westbury’s W.T. Clarke High School.
A Nassau resident and Port Authority police officer at JFK Airport, Mike understands the financial issues.
“Living on Long Island is not easy with three kids,” he said. “My brother tried to work jobs on the side to make money, and did what he had to do. Everything was about the kids.
Growing up in Hicksville, where they graduated from Hicksville High School, the brothers were die-hard sports fans.
“Make sure you get this right: the Rangers, Giants and Yankees,” Mike said, emphatically. “My brother was buried in a New York Ranger jersey and a pair of jeans.”
Later in life, he developed a love for the Cleveland Browns.
In addition to sports, music drove Steve.
“Music was his passion,” Mike recalled. “He played the drums early on, and did it for years, but then life got in the way.”
Nonetheless, Steve stayed connected to the field by helping to promote up-and-coming bands and working part-time at Tower Records.
A D.J. will ensure that music is a big part of the fundraiser at Mulcahy’s and that the mood stays upbeat.
“I really want this to be a celebration,” said Mike. “A celebration of my brother.”