Mary Petriccone was Brooke’s favorite nurse. Mary serves as a nurse practitioner at Memorial Sloan Kettering. Mary made her feel so comfortable and was the only person who could make her smile during her various doctor visits. Mary also helped to keep Steve and Stefani on an even keel. Mary had a way of calming Brooke, Steve, and Stefani as different obstacles and challenges arose. Mary proved to be a perfect balance as a medical professional and liaison between the family and doctors. Although Mary is as qualified as all of the professionals Brooke was in the care of, she was able to communicate on a much more personal level.
Dr. Kemeny was Brooke’s pediatrician. Stefani took Brooke to Dr. Kemeny when she first developed symptoms. At the time of the exam, Dr Kemeny told Stefani to bring Brooke directly to the hospital. Stefani sensed Brooke’s condition was serious by Dr Kemeny’s demeanor. Dr Kemeny went to Harvard and did her residency in pediatric oncology. The next day she came to the hospital for the meeting with the doctors to be there when Steve and Stefani were told the official news. Dr Kemeny is extremely smart and at the same time very sensitive and emotional. She is the very essence of this award and we were honored to present this Award to Dr Alexa Kemeny in Mary’s honor and Brooke’s memory.
Hilda Quintero was Franky Fusco’s home health care nurse. Once diagnosed with DIPG, Franky started becoming symptomatic and his health declined quickly. Hilda understood Franky was loving, caring and only trying to keep his independence. She listened to Franky, listened to his family and helped to give Franky the best quality of life. She learned about DIPG, cared about making Franky happy and comfortable. She attended birthday parties, events and would call after every doctors appointment. She’d stay on after her shift and towards the end, even shared her personal number and would come check on Franky in the middle of the night. She wasn’t just a nurse, she was someone Franky loved who became an important, trusted part of the family. Hilda is a blessing to the healthcare field and we are honored to present this award to Hilda Quintero in Mary’s honor and Brooke’s memory.
Michelle Monje, MD, PhD was a consultant to the Healey family throughout Brooke’s battle. The Healey’s eventually donated a portion of Brooke’s tumor to Dr. Monje and her findings were later published in a paper she wrote. Dr. Monje is considered a leader in the DIPG research community and is widely received and respected by her colleages. Dr. Monje joined the faculty at Stanford University in 2011 as an Assistant Professor of Neurology and Neuro-Oncology. Following her undergraduate degree in biology at Vassar College, Dr Monje received her MD and PhD in Neuroscience from Stanford University. She then completed neurology residency at the Massachusetts General Hospital/Bringham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School program. She subsequently returned to Stanford for a clinical fellowship in pediatric neuro-oncology and a postdoctoral fellowship. As a practicing neurologist and neuro-oncologist, Dr Monje is dedicated to understanding the neurodevelopment origins of pediatric brain tumors and the neurological consequences of cancer treatments.