NEW YORK, Oct. 22, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Tonight, celebrities, business leaders, media personalities, families of fallen first responders, top FDNY, NYPD, PAPD officials, and sports stars will come together to mark three decades of Answer The Call - The New York Police & Fire Widows' & Children's Benefit Fund. Founded by former New York Met Rusty Staub in 1985, Answer the Call has distributed more than $130 million to the families of fallen FDNY, NYPD and PAPD killed in the line of duty. The event comes at a time when the NYPD has experienced a devastating loss with the tragic death of Police Officer Randolph Holder and helps raise funds for families of fallen NYC first responders.
The 30th Anniversary Gala will honor Peter Zaffino; President & Chief Executive Officer of Marsh LLC. In addition, the Founder's Award will be presented to Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP.
Serving as Honorary Chairs for the event being held at the Waldorf Astoria are Maybelline and Sports Illustrated Supermodel Emily DiDonato (daughter of retired FDNY Firefighter and sister of NYPD Police Officer) and WABC 7 Eyewitness News Anchor Bill Ritter. In addition, Former NY Ranger and Hockey Hall of Famer Mark Messier and Actor Vincent Piazza will join Staub and other notable attendees at the event.
Gala Chairs for the event are William F. Dawson, Jr. – CEO of Wellspring Management LLC; John Q. Doyle - CEO Commercial Insurance, AIG; Philip V. Moyles, Jr. – Managing Principal & CEO, Vanbridge Holdings LLC; Steven Stuart – Co-founder & Managing Director Garrison Investment Group; Edward Skyler - Executive Vice President, Citi; Matthew Fosh - CEO, Novae Group plc and Charles Fry - CFO, Novae Group plc.
"What initially began as a small way to help the families of Police Officers and Firefighters who had given their lives to protect us has grown into a family of its own over the past three decades," said New York Police and Fire Widows' and Children's Benefit Fund Founder and Former NY Met Rusty Staub. "Whether through financial support, or the various events we host throughout the year – we want all the families of our first responders to know that we are there for you and always will be."
"As both the daughter and sister of New York City First Responders, Answer the Call is an organization with a mission that is near and dear to my heart," said Maybelline and Sports Illustrated Supermodel Emily DiDonato. "I have amazing memories of growing up as part of my dad's firehouse family in the Bronx and am truly honored to serve as Honorary Gala Chair for this special event, marking 30 years of supporting the families of our fallen FDNY, NYPD and PAPD heroes."
"They are the men and women who rush into burning buildings while everyone else is trying to get out; the ones who risk their lives on the streets trying to keep us safe; and the ones who save our lives in medical emergencies," said WABC 7 Eyewitness News Anchor Bill Ritter. "When a first responder dies on the job, it's up to all of us to help their families. The Fund depends on us, not taxpayer money. Money well donated."
"I am honored to support the New York Police & Fire Widows' & Children's Benefit Fund," said Peter Zaffino, President and CEO of Marsh. "Like many New Yorkers, I have family members who are first responders, and I am well aware of the risks they take every day. I cannot think of a more noble cause than helping take care of families of NYC police officers, firefighters, port authority police officers, and EMS who have sacrificed so much to keep us all safe in this great city."
The evening will also feature a special performance of the National Anthem, sung by Sara Jayne Blackmore, whose father FDNY Lt. James Blackmore was killed in the line of duty in 1998.
PREMIER SPONSORS INCLUDE:
Inspirational Benefactor – Marsh & McLennan Companies
Champion of Hope Sponsor – Novae Group plc
Answer the Call Sponsors – AIG, ACE Group, Citi, Arch Insurance, Ryan Specialty Group
Never Forget Sponsors – Pershing Square Capital, Management LP, Alvarez & Marsal, Trilantic Capital Partners, Palantir, Bloomberg Philanthropies
About Answer the Call
Answer The Call - The New York Police & Fire Widows' & Children's Benefit Fund - provides assistance to the families of New York City Police Officers, Firefighters, Port Authority Police and EMS Personnel who were killed in the line of duty. Since its inception in 1985 by Daniel J. "Rusty" Staub, the Fund has distributed more than $130 million to hundreds of families. The Benefit Fund provides an immediate stipend and annual financial distributions to grieving families after they lose their loved one. In addition, the Benefit Fund provides an ongoing network of support and gatherings for these families to cope and connect after such tragedy. The Fund serves approximately 600 families with a goal to provide meaningful assistance to the beneficiaries for the rest of their lives. www.answerthecall.org
Contact: DKC Public Relations
SOURCE Answer The Call