Richard and Debra Siravo of Wakefield know a thing or two about doing good work. The two are known across Rhode Island for their unmatched efforts to raise awareness about Epilepsy after they lost their five–year-old son to the disease in May 2003. They created the Matty Fund, named after their son, in an effort to raise money and awareness to others about the dangers of epilepsy through a range of charity events. Epilepsy affects 3 million Americans and is the third most common neurological disorder.
For years now, the Siravos have held countless charity events, from golf tournaments to charity walks, in an effort to preserve the memory of Matty, while helping those who are currently battling the disease at the same time. Their dedication has finally been recognized beyond the borders of Rhode Island, as they were honored as recipients of the 2012 WebMD Health Heroes Award, the first people in the state to win the award. WebMD will publish a feature story on the Siravos in their magazine as well as their website. The award also came with $2,500 for the Siravos to donate to a charity of their choice, which in their case was the Matty Fund, to continue its good work. “We are humbled by WebMD’s Health Hero Award and national recognition,” Richard says. “Our passion is driven by the love and support of our tireless volunteers and generous donors.”