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Miracle baby gives back, raises $8K for Richmond University NICU

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- The family of miracle baby Gaspare Randazzo of Arden Heights recently raised more than $8,000 for Richmond University Medical Center's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

Melissa Randazzo was at the beginning of her third trimester when she gave birth to Gaspare nearly two months early in March 2017. The newborn, who weighed just 3 pounds, spent his first five weeks in the NICU. 

Today, Gaspare is 16 months old and healthy. Randazzo credits much of her son's success to the NICU staff. 

To show her appreciation and to give back, Randazzo and her husband, Gaspare, held a fundraiser last month in Liberty Tavern, West Brighton, which was attended by more than 125 people.

The Randazzos presented the proceeds from the event -- a check for $8,484 -- to the hospital Wednesday. The ceremony was attended by hospital staff members.

"We're honored to have the Randazzo family as part of our RUMC family and so happy to see Gaspare doing so well with a long and healthy life ahead of him," Dan Messina, Richmond University's president and CEO, said in a press release. 

"The staff kept coming up to us and thanking us when we should have been the ones thanking them for saving my son," Randazzo said of the donation. "They deserve the recognition."

The proceeds will go toward new hospital-grade leather chairs for the NICU family room, where mothers can breastfeed and hold their newborns. 

"It's an important and special waiting room inside the NICU," Randazzo said. 

In addition to the money, a new television and paint were donated.