Anthony Poselovich was a bright-eyed baby with a huge personality when he was diagnosed with liver cancer at just 11 months old. He fought the disease bravely for three years, enduring chemotherapy, radiation, and a liver transplant before passing away at the young age of 4.
“He was a happy boy who shared his joy with everyone — us, his doctors, his nurses. He just didn’t let cancer define him,” said Anthony’s mom, Cathi. “We were inspired by the way Anthony lived during his short life.”
After Anthony’s passing, Cathi and her husband, Jason, chose to honor their son’s memory by founding the Anthony Poselovich Memorial Foundation to raise funds for Golisano Children’s Hospital and help others who were facing similar hardships.
“The children’s hospital gave Anthony so much and allowed us to enjoy the time that we had with him, so it was natural for us to want to give back,” said Cathi. “Throughout Anthony’s journey, we met so many families who were struggling and we were hoping we’d be able to take some of the stress away, even for just a day.”
The Poselovichs have raised thousands of dollars through their annual silent auction and other fundraising events over the past seven years. Among many other initiatives, the money has supported the construction of the new children’s hospital, and in 2015, the foundation made a $150,000 gift commitment to help fund the project.
To recognize the Poselovichs’ efforts, the sibling room on the hospital’s seventh floor was dedicated in memory of Anthony. The room allows children from the same families to be cared for in one space, easing the burden on parents and fitting perfectly in line with the mission of the foundation.
“We’re incredibly grateful that Cathi and Jason chose to honor their son by thinking of others and giving back to patients and their families,” said Stephanie Sheets, assistant director of community affairs at Golisano Children’s Hospital. “Our new hospital is a reality today because of foundations like this one.”
The foundation also touches the lives of children and their families throughout the year by providing monetary support to parents who are struggling with the many costs associated with cancer treatment — from gas money to medical bills — and sending patients and their families to the zoo, amusement parks, and sporting games.
“For me, that’s one of my favorite things about what we do,” said Cathi. “We’re able to give the kids a chance to just be kids, and allow families to forget about cancer for a while.”
The foundation’s annual silent auction is set for 7-10 p.m. on Nov. 3 at Artisan Works. The event will feature more than 200 prizes, ranging from restaurant and spa gift certificates to suite tickets to Rochester Red Wings and Amerks games. Tickets for the all-you-can-eat event will be available at www.anthonyposelovichfoundation.org for $45 or $50 at the door.