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Commack Students Roll Out Purple Tires for A Cause

Purple tires spraypainted with "Tired of Cancer" aim to raise funds for Commack's Relay for Life in May 2011.

If you wake up one morning and think you've spotted a purple tire on your front lawn, don't worry - there's no need to reach for a second cup of a coffee. 

A group of students are rolling out purple tires across town spraypainted with the slogan "Tired of Cancer" as a fundraiser for Commack's upcoming Relay for Life Event on May 11 and May 12. The purple tires have surprised some, and caught other homeowners off guard. 

"We’ve  taken tires to people's houses and they’ve come out asking us what we’re doing," said Dan Montera, a junior at Commack High School. "They don't know us. They just see a stranger leaving a tire on their lawn." 

Montera is captain of then Commack Relay for Life team Adhuc Vivus, whose 10 members include his sister, Kelly, and Commack freshman Nicolette Burke.They have spent the last month leaving purple tires on local front lawns, driveways, porches, leaning against fences and other locations to raise awareness about Relay for Life and donations for their team's cause. 

Burke said she is walking in Relay for Life for her mother, who she has watched battle cancer since she was in second grade. The Monteras are family friends, who plan to stand by Burke, raising money to help fund research against the disease. 

"Everyone is somehow affected by it. They know someone who’s had cancer or died of cancer," Dan said. 

The team's Latin name, Adhuc Vivus, represents their cause and motto translating loosely to "still alive" or "still fighting." 

Starting in March, team Adhuc Vivus spraypainted discarded tires purple - the symbolic color of Relay for Life - and began dropping them off on neighbors' doorsteps. 

Once the tire was delivered, Commack residents have a choice of what to do: 

  • Donate $10 to have the tire quickly picked up from their house. 
  • Let the tire stay in front of their home for three days, raising awareness of the team's "Tired of Cancer" campaign if they do not wish to make a donation.
  • Donate $15 or more to have the tire sent to someone else's house, where it will sit on their front lawn for three days. 

The game is underway on Tulipwood Drive, where team members gathered to move the tire from the Seligsons' home to a neighbor's home on April 6. A sheet of paper protected in a ziplock bag explains the fundraiser and tells homeowners who sent the tire to sit in front of their home. 

In fact, the purple tires have become so popular with local community members team Adhoc Vivus said they are getting more requests than they have tires for. The students have already increased from three to six tires, and are thinking of adding more if they can find extra. 

"It's become really popular part because people want to mess with their friends and part because they like the cause," Dan said. 

The team have raised more than $1,900 so far and plan to continue the fundraiser until the event, in addition to holding yard sales and garage sales.  

laura c April 12, 2012 at 01:56 PM
Laura C @CommackMom: You should think more than once before you put something negative in writing out there. That's why Facebook is so damaging for our kids. The tire would only be on your property if you had a friend who sent it to you. So it's a friend of a friend of a friend. Six degrees of separation. Do you have any friends who might send the tire to you, thinking you might donate? You don't have to donate, but maybe that friend of yours thought you would get a laugh out of the idea. Either way, the tire doesn't randomly end up on your property. With all the problems in the world, do you have that much time on your hands to post a negative comment about people trying to help others? I never had the time to be on this site before, but I MADE the time specifically to respond to your negativity.
Nancy Montera April 12, 2012 at 04:16 PM
@ George W- Thanks for making the effort to help even further than your donation to the team! We are getting a good response and we might give Bob a call and get some more tires rolling...
Grace April 12, 2012 at 05:32 PM
What kind of heartless person are you CommackMom? This is a way for these children to make a difference by banding together for a great cause. One of them has grown up with her mother who has been fighting this horrible disease for the past seven years and continues to do so. Not only is Maria Zuccala Burke fighting for her life, but she herself is the first one to reach out to help someone else in need. I think this is a wonderful thing that is that the children are doing! Grace Y.
Grace April 12, 2012 at 05:39 PM
Nancy If you find yourself with more tires or have one that needs a lawn to rest on for a couple of days, please drop one off to me. Maria has my address :) Grace Y
George W April 12, 2012 at 06:01 PM
Okay, there's been some disapproval of the potential for unwanted tires being dropped on lawns, whether that's happened or not. Some have taken that as an attack on the kids, but I don't think that's the case. Rather than putting any more energy into useless criticism, how about using that energy to write a check or click on the link near the top of the article, and do what really matters. I was able to charge a donation to my credit card, and it goes directly to the American Cancer Society - a tax deductible gift. If you choose the Adhuc Vivus team, they get credit for raising the money.


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