Awareness, funds raised in Brocton event

We would like to thank everyone for remembering Darren and are pleased to announce the Fourth Annual Darren Manzella-Lapeira Memorial Run 2017 was another success. We are so grateful to the volunteers, sponsors, friends, runners and walkers and community whose continuing support make this Run possible.

This year’s event had 156 runners and walkers and again, the most auction items to date.

About $14,000 was raised this year in Darren’s honor to support our area veterans. Earnings from this event benefited three funds established in Darren’s name. The Darren Manzella-Lapeira Veteran’s Assistance Fund received $7,000 in donation this year at the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation. This fund helps veterans in time of immediate need to pay for things such as rent, car payments, groceries and other immediate necessities.

In addition, $4,000 was donated to the Veteran’s Endowment Fund administered through the Chautauqua County Veterans Service Agency. This fund serves as an interest free loan with no fixed payment schedule up to $500 per veteran in need of financial assistance. If the loan is repaid, the veteran may reapply for a loan up to the $500 limit again as needed.

Lastly, $3,000 was donated to the Staff Sgt. Darren Manzella-Lapeira Scholarship Fund in Darren’s honor at Brocton Central School. This is a $1,000 per year scholarship in which any descendant of a veteran is eligible to further their formal education in any form.

We want to give a very special thank you to all of our sponsors this year. This race would simply not be possible without you and your generous continuing support. The American Legion Post 434, and The Sons of The American Legion have our utmost thanks also for their support. We want to thank all of the people who donated items for the auction and sent personal donations. Because of each and every one of you, we are able to keep Darren’s memory alive and give back to the veterans of our community. Finally, we would like to thank Michelle Patterson, Melissa Seavy, Dustin Ackendorf and Vicki Ransom for their help and advice. Also our Run Committee, Pat Titus, Deanne Manzella, Kathy Thies, Lynne Wysocki, Andrew and Amber Manzella, Stephanie Dulski and Priscilla Watters – we couldn’t have run this race without you. These individuals who work so hard, contribute tremendous amounts of time, energy and effort for the race, thank you so much. We are so appreciative of you and your support.

We are already looking forward to and making plans for next year’s event. If you have any questions or suggestions on how to make next year even better, please contact Nancy or Mike Manzella at

Nancy and Michael Manzella are Brocton residents.