Charity dinner, auction held for leukemia victim draws 700

By on November 10, 2004

More than 700 people came out to support and show their love to a child with leukemia.

Brianna Hamilton, the daughter of Elissa Hamilton, an accounting clerk at the Quinnipiac bookstore, was showered with affection by friends, family and community in her time of great need.

A pasta dinner was held at the Knights of Columbus on Nov. 4, by Hamilton’s godparents, Noreen and John Bashta, to raise money to help pay for expensive medical treatments. Guests were also invited to participate in a silent auction and raffle drawings. Entertainment was also provided.

Attendants bid on donated items such as a basketball signed by the UConn Girls 2003-’04 championship team. Bidding started at $75 and eventually rose to 300$.

Raffles prizes included gift certificates to Everyday Gourmet, Eli’s on Whitney, Sergio’s, and a one-month trial membership at Bally’s Total Fitness.

During each of the two sittings, dancers from the Joan Lynn Dance Company performed in honor of Hamilton. The last dance provoked the most emotion since it was the last dance that Hamilton ever performed with the company. The girls danced to Josh Grobin’s, “You Raise Me Up.”

“Brianna was really nice and really fun, this night’s special for us,” former dance mate Dana Morcaldi, said. “She’s still happy and I think she’ll still be as she always was.”

A video of Brianna thanking everyone for coming to the dinner was also played.

As Lee Ann Womack’s “I Hope You Dance” played in the background, people were overwhelmed with feelings of warmth and sadness.

“Watching the video and being here tonight made me realize how important it is to not take things for granted. Just listen to the song,” sophomore public relations major, Melissa Bach, said. The Bashta family normally throws yearly charity dinners for the St. Jude Foundation but decided this year to hold the dinner in honor of Hamilton instead.

Bracelets for Brianna are still available for $1at the bookstore. Any other donations are also welcome.


About Danielle Barbarich