Zio (Uncle) Angelo

August 21st, 2012

8-21-12The days just keep getting better on The Kindness Bicycle Ride for Heroes. The past couple of days, it felt more like a warm autumn day than a cool summer day. The seasons are slowly changing.
This morning I took the early morning ferry and the train to the southern tip of Staten Island. My day-long ride began at the 123rd Precinct in Tottenville. “This is really cool,” was the comment I was met with as I pulled up to their front door. “What a great way to promote Heroes,” was another. NYPD deserves good press and they can always get it here.
Engine 151 and Ladder 76 was my first stop of the five Firehouses I visited today. What a fun visit as we talked in the kitchen about lunch and what sort of momento of my visit they could give me. They insisted I take a lapel pin and a great looking “151” hat, which I wore in today’s photo.
My favorite story of the day was about Zio (Uncle) Angelo from Italy. When the Rossville Firefighter was a young boy, he went to Italy with his dad. His Zio Angelo would treat the children in his village to ice cream and other treats every day. It was guessed by the boy that Zio Angelo was a millionaire. When dad and son went to visit Zio Angelo at his house, the entire inside of the house was burned-out and there was only a mattress on the floor. Zio Angelo used all his resources to make the children in his village happy. It is what brought him joy. To me Zio Angelo was a millionaire, a kindness millionaire.
At day’s end in Manhattan, I had the pleasure to meet Angela G. Carr, Ph.D., NYC Department of Education Director of Division of Students with Disabilities & English Language Learners. She and I had a wonderful chat about The Kindness Bicycle Ride for Heroes and the students in the NYC schools. With one stroke of the pen, 1.3 million children can learn about taking a lifetime pledge of One Million Acts Of Kindness. I’m keeping my fingers crossed on this one, big time!

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