NEW HAVEN — An organization founded by a pitcher for the Minnesota Twins has pledged $500,000 to Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital to help enhance its Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program.
Strike 3 Foundation was established in 2008 by Craig Breslow, a Trumbull native and Major League baseball player and Minnesota Twins pitcher whose sister is a survivor of childhood cancer, the hospital said. Breslow launched the foundation to heighten awareness, mobilize support and raise money for childhood cancer research.
Joe Lizza, third from left, COO, Strike 3 Foundation, presents a check for $500,000, representing the total of the Foundation’s five year commitment to the YNHCH Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program to (l-r) Dr. Michael Apkon, YNHCH vice president and executive director; Dr. Gary Kupfer, chief of pediatric hematology and oncology; Marna P. Borgstrom, YNHH President and CEO, Dr. Margaret Hostetter, physician-in-Chief, YNHCH; Dr. Peter Herbert, YNHH Chief of Staff; and pediatric surgeon Dr. Robert Touloukian.
"Bone marrow transplantation is an area that has transformed the treatment of cancers and diseases that were incurable in the past," said Joe Lizza, COO of Strike 3 Foundation, in a prepared statement. "It is important to our organization to support a program that will help improve the lives of children battling cancer. Working with Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital to expand its Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program is a perfect fit for our mission."
Strike 3’s funding also will support the addition of specialized medical staff, data management to improve outcomes and ongoing staff training.
Dr. Gary Kupfer, chief of pediatric hematology and oncology at the Children’s Hospital, said the enhanced program "will provide exceptional care and support to approximately 40 children and their families each year who would otherwise have to travel out-of-state for treatment."
YNHH CEO and President Marna Borgstrom, said the hospital is "delighted" to be the recipient of the Strike 3 pledge.
"This generous funding will allow us to further enhance our program of life-saving therapies for childhood cancer, immune deficiencies and genetic disorders and improve outcomes for our youngest patients," she said.