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Giant's Ernie Accorsi - Philanthropist

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Trumpet_Man, Sep 8, 2006.

  1. Trumpet_Man

    Trumpet_Man New Member

    Feb 14, 2006

    Quietly, Giants' GM steps into a youngster's lifeAssociated Press
    National Football League News Wire

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Standing on the practice field, Ernie Accorsi turned and pointed to a patch in the New York skyline less than 5 miles away.

    "They used to be there," the Giants general manager said. "We could see them every day."

    As the fifth anniversary nears of the World Trade Center attacks, Accorsi can still see the towers where thousands perished. And he has spent the past five years living with a secret.

    Her name is Stephanie, and Accorsi has "adopted" her.

    In the weeks after the attacks, like many Americans, Accorsi looked for a way to help. Instead of giving to a charity, though, he wanted to do more. He contacted a group of lawyers he had once addressed. That's how Accorsi learned about Stephanie.

    The Glen Rock girl was 11 at the time. Her father, Anthony, was among the 658 New York employees at Cantor Fitzgerald Securities killed on the upper floors of the World Trade Center's north tower.

    "I was trying to find someone who was really in need, and this little girl was living with her grandparents and they were on pension," Accorsi said. "She was going to a Catholic school and they were going to pull her out."

    So Accorsi stepped in and offered to pay her tuition through high school, allowing her to continue studying at The Academy of Our Lady and now at Paramus Catholic High School.

    Her grandparents, Lucille and Bob, asked that the family's last name not be used because Stephanie, now 16, is having a tough time dealing with the upcoming anniversary. They turned down a reporter's request to interview her.

    Accorsi declined to say how much money he has given.

    "It's in the thousands," Lucille said. "It's thousands and thousands. You're talking a lot of tuition, but that's not all. He's done other things, too. That first Christmas he came by with all kinds of gifts. He told his daughter to go buy gifts for an 11-year-old and he came with pile of them. It made her day."

    Christmas wasn't the only time Accorsi visited the family's home in northern New Jersey. He has been there for Stephanie's birthdays, confirmation, and even recently for a sweet 16 party.

    "She has sent me pictures every step of the way," Accorsi said. "She gives me little color pictures, class pictures from school. I have watched her grow up from a little girl to a beautiful young lady."

    Accorsi remembered the first time he brought Stephanie to Giants Stadium to watch the team practice.

    "It's funny, she said to me: 'My dad was a Dallas Cowboys fan and I feel I have to honor his life," Accorsi recalled.

    He knew what to say.


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