MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. -- Friends of Danielle, a Mount Vernon charity founded in 2011 in memory of Eastchester resident Danielle Rinaldi, will have its first annual walk-a-thon Oct. 28 at Tibbetts Brook Park in Yonkers.
Rinaldi contracted leukemia at the age of 6 in 1987, fought the disease for seven years and overcame the illness. She became physically disabled due to the disease, but maintained "an incredible will to live, enjoyed people enormously and had a positive effect on everyone around her," the charity said in a statement.
Rinaldi died in 2008 after complications due to broken femurs after falling out of wheelchair.
In 1991, while Danielle was fightinglLeukemia, Danielle’s friends and neighbors formed Friends of Danielle to honor her. The organization was built with a mission to help people, like Danielle, with catastrophic illness and to help people pay for some of the expenses associated with an illness. In 2011, the nonprofit mandate was officially broadened to provide funds for medical expenses and therapeutic programs.