‘She can make a sour day sweet again’

By SUSAN WADE
Posted 7/28/20

YULAN, NY — This is a story about four young girls and their friendship: the kind of friendship we all wish we enjoyed. 

When they learned the situation in which their friend Isabella …

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‘She can make a sour day sweet again’

Posted

YULAN, NY — This is a story about four young girls and their friendship: the kind of friendship we all wish we enjoyed. 

When they learned the situation in which their friend Isabella Giglio found herself, classmates and best friends Emma Bisland and Savannah Quick quickly sprang into action. The fifth graders proposed that a fundraiser be established and a lemonade sale was put together within days to help their friend. Fellow friend Hailey Gochenour also got involved when she returned from being out of town. 

Isabella was diagnosed with central neurocytoma on Thursday, July 16. Within three days, she underwent two brain surgeries at Westchester Medical Center during which the tumor was removed. She will be subject to radiation therapy over the next few months.

Isabella is known for her sunny disposition and sweet smile, and by the nickname Izzy. She is the daughter of Daniel and Terri Giglio of Yulan.  

Emma and Savannah enlisted the help of their moms and other family members, and the lemonade stand was set up for July 23. The setup included not only fresh-squeezed lemonade, with or without ice and seeds, but also grilled hot dogs, snack foods and cards for well-wishers to send cheery messages to Izzy. The stand was along Forestburgh Road in Glen Spey. A sign at the entrance to the festivities invited all to gather for “lemonade and a prayer for Izzy.”

Donned in “Team Izzy” tee shirts, the girls were active in serving the lemonade and taking food orders. They practiced their math skills by adding up the sales. 

Asked why they took on this venture, Emma said they wanted to help bring Izzy’s smile back. “Isabella is the kindest friend with the biggest heart. She can take a sour day and make it sweet again.” Savannah said that Izzy was the first friend she made when her family moved to the area. 

These girls are a “package deal” and there are no sleepovers unless all are involved. The group is not complete unless all four are together, according to Savannah’s mother, Jenna Quick. 

Sara Bisland Hunt, Emma’s mom, said that the girls planned the entire event and were totally hands-on in the execution, from sign making to lemonade squeezing, to tee shirt design. Hunt added that Emma’s first foray into fundraising was at the age of five when she began a campaign to help a family friend battling cancer.  

Despite a dismal forecast for that day, the weather cooperated beautifully and the atmosphere was “just right” to down a cold cup of lemonade and eat a hot dog. And the sales and donations added up. At the end of the seven-hour event, an astonishing $7,575 had been raised.

After the event, the girls and their moms all cried together, amazed at the results. Savannah told her mom that this wasn’t the end, but the beginning. “We want our Isabella’s smile back and her to be home.”

Contributions are being accepted at Jeff Bank in Eldred, and a carry-out pasta dinner under the auspices of the Can’t Hurt Steel Foundation is planned for Saturday, August 15 at the Eldred Town Hall between 12-6 p.m. 

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