Put on your walking shoes and "Walk for Olivia" for a great cause to be held at 's track on Sunday, May 22 at 11 a.m.
Olivia Anne Bonfilio was born on Nov. 13, 2001, one day after her father's birthday. She came into this world as most infants do - crying and her arms and legs kicking. She was greeted by her mom, Lauri (Lyman), her father, Alfred, her stepbrother, Jared, and her brother, Alfred IV, and has lived in Medfield her entire life.
"Livie" started school in Medfield at age five and did all the things that little girls do; She was a Girl Scout Brownie, danced, played soccer, and rough-housed with her brothers. Upon starting the third grade with her fellow classmates, no one was to know that in just two short months her world would change dramatically.
One week before her ninth birthday, she was taken to the doctor by her parents as she had lost a tooth that would not clot. Her pediatrician was concerned enough to have Olivia taken to Norwood Hospital, and then further rushed to Children's Hospital in Boston. She was diagnosed with a rare form of APML Leukemia.
Olivia remained in the hospital throughout Thanksgiving and, while losing her hair, spent her ninth Christmas at Children’s as well.
Olivia started her fourth round of Chemotherapy, was doing considerably well and was looking forward to her return to school. Suddenly, she developed an infection in her blood that required her to be sedated and intubated. She returned to the ICU at Children’s. In keeping with her name, "Liv" fought hard and was extubated in April to her parents’ – and all her family's – relief. As of April 25, Olivia was still in the ICU.
The family has had tremendous support from local families, friends, and neighbors, police, Cops for Kids with Cancer, The Visiting Angels of Medfield, various churches and the Medfield schools.
You can show Olivia and her family support by putting on your walking shoes and walking for Olivia on Sunday, May 22 at Medfield High School's track. The Walk-a-thon begins at a 11 a.m. A $25 donation per family or $5 per person is requested. There will be prizes for all children and special prizes for the most creative use of Orange – the official color for Leukemia – on a t-shirt.
To register, simply send a check payable to The Olivia Foundation with your name, the number of participants, and either your address or e-mail to Camille M. Vito, F/B/O The Olivia Foundation, 286 Main Street, Kingston, MA 02364-1922. It may also be dropped off at the , 17 Elm Street, Medfield, MA 02052. Of course, you are welcome to register on the day of the walk but knowing ahead of time will help organizers better plan the event.
If you can't make it, but would like to help the family, please do so by sending tax exempt monetary donations to "The Olivia Foundation" c/o Dedham Savings Bank, 55 Elm Street, Dedham, MA 02026 or by dropping by any branch office. A Tax ID number is available upon request.