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Penn-Trafford

Penn Township family donates clothing to P-T, McKeesport, Somerset schools

Patrick Varine
| Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018, 8:03 p.m.
Above, school counselor Lauren Trail, Denise, Gia and Greg Capoccioni, and Harrison Park Elementary Principal Jeff Swartz on Oct. 18, 2018. The Capoccionis collected and donated coats, which will be distributed at five elementary schools in the Penn-Trafford School District.
Submitted photo
Above, school counselor Lauren Trail, Denise, Gia and Greg Capoccioni, and Harrison Park Elementary Principal Jeff Swartz on Oct. 18, 2018. The Capoccionis collected and donated coats, which will be distributed at five elementary schools in the Penn-Trafford School District.

Denise and Greg Capoccioni lost their daughter Ava in 2011, when she was stillborn.

For the past six years, they have held an annual fall party in her memory, geared toward children.

“One year we had the Pirate Parrot here, one year we had fireworks. … We just wanted to make it as much fun as possible for the kids,” Denise Capoccioni said.

This year they asked attendees to bring an outfit for donation to a child during October, which is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, and on Oct. 18 donated more than 90 outfits at Harrison Park Elementary School. The clothing will be distributed at Penn-Trafford’s five elementary schools as well as in the McKeesport and Somerset Area school districts.

“More than 200 people joined us in our home on Sept. 22,” Capoccioni said. “Since I’m from Somerset, we took 25 outfits there to Maple Ridge Elementary. And we’ll take 20 outfits to McKeesport as well.”

Over the years, if Capoccioni heard about a local couple that had a miscarriage or lost a child, they were invited to the parties as well.

“I ended up becoming friends with people we never even knew,” she said. “We wanted to keep the memory of our daughter alive, and wanted to help other people’s children.”

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, pvarine@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MurrysvilleStar.

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