RIVERHEAD, N.Y. — A devoted crusader for individuals with special needs was posthumously honored on Long Island.
CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan says the devotion of this mother to her developmentally disabled set the example, “treating all with dignity they deserve.”
“Ever since Danny passed away, I think about him every day,” said Casey Karry.
Four decades ago, Danny Karry was the first resident to move into the Riverhead nonprofit for the developmentally disabled Rise Life Services. He had been languishing in a psychiatric hospital when is emotional parents went public with his inhumane treatment.
“She and my father became determined to get him out of there, and when my mother wants to get something done, it gets done,” Casey Karry said.
Mary Karry, a high school dropout from Queens, later earned her G.E.D. and went on to transform special needs care on Long Island.
“With that humble of a background this is what she created,” Casey Karry said.
What started with Danny’s single home has expanded to 32 small residences, including a three acre sensory garden, where son Danny and his mom Mary Karry, were posthumously honored.
“Mary was so involved, she really had to fight. That is how Rise began, because of Mary and Danny. I’ve been with Danny the last nine years of his lief,” said Charles Evdos, former director at Rise Life Services.
“It’s rewarding. A different kind of nursing than what you think about,” said registered nurse Megan Beach.
“I saw family a lot. That’s what’s important in this field, that you get to know the families,” said registered nurse Sharon Prince of Rise Life Services.
Nurse Robert Walker feels the personal reward from those he cares for.
“The smallest things in life make them so happy. It’s great to see,” Walker said.
“The people who work here are more amazing than I could possibly explain,” Casey Karry said.
The need for the services founded by Mary Karry is dire. Nonprofits like Rise Life Services, aiding the developmentally disabled, are changing lives every day.
Keeping the mission moving, devoted volunteers call themselves the lucky ones.