On Saturday 25 January 2020, 700 hundred local Griffith residents gathered at The Yoogali Club for an evening of support for the Macri Family and their beloved son, Angelo who finally succumbed to cancer in 2018. The fundraising Memorial dinner evening was two years in the making from a promise a father made to his son.
Angelo Macri (jnr), a farmer, died at Whitton on 18 January 2018, aged 34 from cancer. Angelo had previously had a heart transplant at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne when he was 17 years of age. He was later diagnosed with a blood cancer and began treatment, under Professor David Ma, at the Kinghorn Cancer Centre in Sydney.
Whilst in hospital at St Vincent’s Sydney, Angelo discussed with his father, Angelo Macri (snr) the idea of holding a fundraiser to support cancer research as a way of thanking the doctors and nurses at St Vincent’s for the compassionate care he was receiving, and as a way of helping other patients and their families who were touched by this terrible disease. Being an avid car enthusiast, Angelo asked his father to consider buying a special car that could be raffled, with proceeds raised going towards cancer research.
Following his son’s death a few months later, Angelo (snr) remembered the promise he had made to his youngest son. He called a family conference and all agreed that a memorial dinner should be held on the second anniversary of Angelo’s passing.
In June 2019 Angelo (snr) purchased a Camaro Chevrolet 2SS valued at $98,500 from Leo Franco Holden in Griffith. This was the special car to be raffled to honour Angelo’s wishes to help St Vincent’s at the Angelo Macri Memorial Dinner.
Two thousand raffle tickets were sold in Griffith and the surrounding areas. The raffle was drawn at the dinner, the winner was a local Griffith family, the Kahloo family. The car was presented to the Kahloo family in the following days and the new proud owner Ajaz took Angelo Macri (snr) for the first drive in the car.
All proceeds from the raffle and ticket sales from the dinner will support cancer research at St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney. A cheque was presented by the entire Macri family to Associate Professor Richard Gallagher, Head of Cancer Services, St Vincent’s Hospital at the memorial dinner.
The final tally of funds raised came to an amazing $281,000. Professor Gallagher said, “To raise such an extraordinary amount of money in such a short period of time is a true testament to the generosity of the Griffith community – not to mention a reflection of the love for, and the sheer determination of, the Macri family”.