Our Team

President

Vivi Cassella

Co-Vice Presidents
Frank Cassella
Pat DeRocco



Board of Directors
Richard Hanlon
Jack Mencia
Raul Fernandez
Jack Davies
Dr. Nick Cacciabeve, M.D.


About Us

The Joe Cassella Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization born from the loss of an amazing man and inspired by the overwhelming support his family received throughout the journey.

Our mission is to provide financial assistance for medical expenses of children who are ill in Northern Virginia. Childhood illnesses and injuries can place a heavy financial toll on a family. Our hope is to help families feel less worried about medical bills so they can focus on supporting their children during their time of need.

We help children ages 0-17 years old who are residents of Virginia and are currently undergoing treatment for an illness or injury.

Please fill out the application for assistance with complete and accurate
information and fax it to Vivi Cassella at (571) 918-4566 or email it to
vivi@joecassellafoundation.org. You may also give it to your social worker
at Inova Children's Hospital.

download application

Joe's Story

Joe Cassella was a superhero who was taken from us too soon on July 11, 2009, after a hard-fought battle for 10 months with Mesothelioma at the age of 40.

Joe, a native of Frankfort, NY, was a caring and loving father to three children (Nicole, Joey and Ava) with his beloved wife Gina. He was a wonderful son, brother, and friend; a man’s man; a gentle, but strong soul; and a pillar of our community. He was a huge Capitals fan, but loved the Yankees most of all.

He moved to Virginia in 1993 and since he co-opened Elite Fitness Concepts he became an integral part of the Great Falls community. He was up far before the sunrise just to open the doors to his fitness facility prior to the actual 5:30 a.m. opening hours. He did so just to accommodate the needs of his members. Joe was more than an outstanding personal trainer and business owner… He was a superhero. He was the epitome of strength, health, fitness, family and a well-balanced life. He was a friend who always made you smile and feel special. He was a great listener whose advice we all sought. He was the kind of person who put everyone else before himself, motivated you in simple ways and made you want to change your life for the better.
He lived his life doing random acts of kindness, yet more importantly he lived his life doing acts of consistent kindness.

In 2007, sixth-grader Peter Choo, a local to Great Falls, tragically passed away from cancer. Having kids of his own, this deeply affected Joe and he felt the need to help in any way that he could. He chose to do a 5K run/walk and donate 100% of the proceeds to the Make-A-Wish foundation, since it had helped Peter. His honesty and willingness to give back without something in return was unparalleled. It was those characteristics in Joe, which allowed Choo’s family to want to go through with the race as it would be their first true public outing since Peter’s passing. The event was a huge success, not only for the Choo family, but for the entire community as it brought many people together. Joe stayed committed to the cause and hosted the second annual 5K the following year. The race helped pay medical bills for Nick Cafferky, who was paralyzed in a beach accident when he was a rising senior at Langley High School.

Joe always talked about his dreams and wanting to do more to help others, even when he got sick. When he was diagnosed with cancer, he never lost sight of what was important to him and he often got frustrated because he was unable to do things for others. This is why the Joe Cassella Foundation was created, to carry on Joe’s dreams of helping kids because he is not here to do so. Together, we are his living legacy. In sticking with Joe’s unselfish nature, the focus will be on the sick or injured children in our area that need help with their medical bills, just like the kids Joe started helping before he got sick.

Read more about Joe:

 

Grant Recipients

gracie

Gracie

1-year old girl with brain tumors
(optic glioma and astrocytoma)

gavin

Gavin

3-month old boy with congenital heart defect (DiGeorge Syndrome)

gianna

Gianna

1-year old girl with a rare form of liver cancer (Hepatoblastoma)

Tara

Tara

8-year old girl with brain tumor (astrocytoma)

Anu

Anu

3-year old girl with Chronic Mylogenous Leukemia

Cecilia

Cecilia

10-year-old girl with bone cancer

John

John

11-year old boy with Ewing sarcoma
recipient in 2013 and 2014

Raza

9-year old boy with T-cell leukemia

Diego

15-year old boy with broken leg and multiple surgeries

Ryan

3-month old boy with bronchitis

Sara

17-year old girl with Leukemia

Grant

7-year old boy with diabetes

Cesar

2-year old boy with cancer

Andres

8-month old boy with neuroblastoma

Anthony

2-day old baby boy with inoperable heart defects

Shane

2-year old boy with acute myeloid leukemia

Karla

15-year old girl with chronic kidney disease

Matias

16-year old boy with osteosarcoma

Laureen

8-month old girl with hepatoblastoma

Lucas

15 year old boy with diabetes

Marcos

16 year old boy with testicular cancer

Tucker

Tucker

18 year old boy who is quadriplegic

Kevin

5 year old boy with retinoblastoma

Bruce

12-year old boy with metastatic
brain cancer

Jordan

Jordan

17-year old boy with brain cancer

Mathias

Mathias

13-year old boy with bone cancer

Oliver

14-year old boy with Leukemia

Isla Kate

1-year old girl with neuroblastoma

Brady

2-month old boy with a heart problem (coarctation of the aorta)

Adrian

4-year old boy with Leukemia

Ginger

12-year old girl with cancer

Farhan

13-year old boy with sarcoma

Cyron

17-year old boy with Ewing’s sarcoma

Nicolas

14-year old boy with Leukemia

Yaritza

18-year old girl with brain cancer

 

Our mission is to provide financial assistance for medical expenses of children who are ill in Northern Virginia. Childhood illnesses and injuries can place a heavy financial toll on a family. Our hope is to help families feel less worried about medical bills so they can focus on supporting their children during their time of need.