Niagara Gazette

August 26, 2013

Niagara Hospice marks 25 years of service, unveils pavilion

Staff reports
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — LOCKPORT — The Dominic Lariccia Family Pavilion was inaugurated during Niagara Hospice’s 25th anniversary Gala Under The Stars earlier this month.

The large pavilion was built in memory of Dominic Lariccia, who died in 2012. Lariccia’s daughter, Hospice supporter Karen Nanula, and her husband Paul proposed it as a way to show thanks for the care that Lariccia and his family had received from Niagara Hospice. The pavilion provides an additional outdoor gathering space on the Sunset Drive campus.

NIagara Hospice volunteers also marked the 25th anniversary of the organization.

“We are grateful to all the people who have made the last 25 years possible,” president and CEO John Lomeo said. “From the staff to the volunteers, to the board members, donors and community leaders, Niagara Hospice is truly a community foundation. We look forward to another 25 years of caring for Niagara County patients and their families.”

The Gala featured 25 Years of Shared Journeys, a pictorial scrapbook illustrating Niagara Hospice’s history back to 1980, when hospice was still just an idea.

“It was a process ensuring hospice care would be available for our county,” Niagara Hospice co-founder and board member Patricia Evans said. “I was proud to be part of the small group that Reverend Cook organized back in 1980 to discuss the feasibility of developing a hospice program. And I’m so proud of how it has evolved and grown.”

Evans and volunteers Janice Litz, Mary Ligammari and April Biamonte assembled and designed the scrapbook after poring over boxes and files that accumulated over a 33-year period. The professionally printed, limited edition book remembers many Niagara Hospice volunteers, staff and hospice family members and founders.

The book is being sold for $20 online, at; proceeds from the book and the Gala benefit hospice patients and families.

Gala Under The Stars featured antique car rides, a star-gazing location with telescopes, silent and basket auction items, a Mills Jewelers giveaway, wines from the Niagara Wine Trail and local and regional craft beers provided by the Western New York Beer Club. Food stations were catered by the Tuscarora Inn and dessert was provided by Lake Effect Ice Cream. Music was by the Jim Beishline Quartet.

All of the activities led up to a $10,000 giveaway to one winning cash raffle ticket holder.

Niagara Hospice is the only New York State-certified hospice provider in Niagara County. Staff and volunteers provide care to terminally ill Niagara County residents and their families at home, at Niagara Hospice House, at contracted nursing homes and assisted living facilities and at hospitals.