Port Richmond family raises prayers and funds for DIPG research with "Storm the Heavens" Fund

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Thursday, February 8, 2024
Philly family raises funds and prayers in honor of late daughter
Mina Carroll and Mark Stendardo created "Storm the Heavens" fund, with a shared hope for a cure for DIPG.

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- The co-creators of "Storm the Heavens" Fund have been raising money for DIPG research in their daughter's honor.

At 7-years-old, Mina Caroll and Mark Stendardo's daughter was diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma.

"It's a form of brain cancer...we knew that we needed a miracle. I immediately went to Facebook and asked people to pray for our daughter. We need to storm Heaven with prayers," said Carroll.

Philomena Stendardo passed away at 8-years-old on July 23, 2017.

Hoping to make a change, Carroll and Stendardo decided to raise money for research with various events and galas.

"We have two fundraisers every year, and to date, we have funded around $1.2 million of DIPG specific research," said Carroll.

With the community's support every step of the way, they still gather to pray the rosary for everyone's intentions.

"We know how much the prayers meant to us, and we just want to provide that grace for other families," said Carroll.

Their shared hope for the future is to see other families avoid the same tragedies.

"It's nice to know that people believe in the cause, and they believe that it's worth supporting...so that some day, when a child is diagnosed we can say to them 'I'm sorry that your child has DIPG, but they're still going to outlive you,'" said Carroll.

For more information on Storm the Heavens Fund, check out their website.