Founder of the Chris Carrino Foundation for FSHD and the inspiration behind the creation of C2C4FSHD

Chris Carrino

The 2016-17 NBA season marks Chris Carrino’s 16th season as the radio play-by-play voice of Nets basketball, which can be heard on the team’s flagship station, Sports Radio 66 WFAN. Over the years, he has described some of the greatest moments in franchise history including both NBA Finals appearances in 2002 and 2003, as well as the Nets very first game in Brooklyn in 2012. Chris has been a part of the Nets broadcasts since 1992 when he started as a studio producer and feature reporter. From there he worked his way up to studio host and back up play by announcer before being promoted to full time play-by-play announcer in 2001. Born in the Bronx in 1970, Carrino spent his early years growing up in Yonkers, New York before moving with his family to Central Westchester County where he attended Iona Prep in New Rochelle, NY. A 1992 graduate of Fordham University, Carrino was an award-winning radio voice of Fordham basketball, football, and baseball on the famed WFUV. It was there that he learned his craft from legendary sportscaster, Marty Glickman. In 2000, Chris met his wife, the Brooklyn born and raised Laura Ferrity. The two married in 2002 and welcomed their son Christopher into the world in 2004. The family currently resides in Central New Jersey. Once an avid sportsman, Carrino noticed a drop off in his ability to compete athletically during his college days. He was diagnosed with a type of muscular dystrophy known as facio scapulo humeral dystrophy or FSHD, a genetic disorder that has resulted in the progressive weakening of the muscles mostly in Chris’ shoulders and upper limbs. In 2011 he established the Chris Carrino Foundation for FSHD.

Concept Creator and Core Team Leader

Frank P. Carbone

Frank is the Concept Creator and Core Team Leader for C2C4FSHD. He has organized numerous team cycling events, including Bike For Life ’96, a cross country bicycle journey designed to celebrate his Parish’s Centennial Celebration in 1996. Chris and Frank have become close over the past five years, meeting while Frank coached his niece Samantha at St. Joseph’s College. They decided to collaborate on this grand project about a year ago and now it is about to become a reality. “My team is very excited and ready to take on this amazing journey to join forces with Chris Carrino to help raise awareness and much needed funds to battle this debilitating disease. We are extremely proud and honored to represent the foundation and everything that it stands for and hope to raise over $100,000 to help find a cure.”

Donate: Frank Carbone C2C19

Core Team Member and Tech & Social Media Liaison

Mariusz Bernatowicz

Hello, my name is Mariusz and I’m very proud and excited to be the member of the Core C2C4FSHD Team. I’m committed to do 50/50 cycling while handling and assisting the team with all aspects of the technology, creating and maintaining C2C4FSHD website and social media. Meeting Chris Carrino in person who is afflicted with FSHD was quiet experience to see him struggling and fighting it every day, and the saddest part is that there is no treatment or cure for FSHD. I’m looking forward to meet people on the road to learn, educate and bring more awareness about FSHD via cycling, website and social media. With additional fundraising we hope to get, it will assist additional research to find a cure and fight the FSHD together. I’m committed to do ‘Every Mile for FSHD’. #C2C4FSHD #FSHD

Donate: Team Mariusz C2C17

Core Team Member and Public Relations Liaison

John Cielepak

I grew up in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and currently live in Middle Village, Queens. I am on the core cycling team and am helping to plan the trip by managing all of the PR elements, accommodations and events of the tour. I spent the last 6 years working for various sports teams within the Madison Square Garden Company in the Community Relations and Event Marketing departments. While growing up in Brooklyn I played basketball in the St. Stan's Athletic League where I met our core team leader Frank Carbone, who was the founder and director of the league. After playing in the league as a child, I went on to offer my services as coach and volunteer. St. Stan's has always been a big part of my own and my family's lives so when Frank approached me about the opportunity to be a part of this amazing journey, and showed me a video of the struggles that Chris Carrino goes through everyday and how hard he fights I was inspired and eager to join and help in any way that I could. After researching FSHD and learning that there is currently no cure or treatment available, I am motivated to raise awareness and funds for research in order to improve the lives of those affected by this terrible disease. I look forward to what will certainly be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for a great cause in support of these amazing people.

Donate: John Cielepak C2C2

Core Team Member

Jesse Iozzio

Hi my name is Jesse Iozzio, I first met Frank while attending St. Joseph's College. During this time he was the college's athletic director. Frank was there for me in my fundraising endeavors so naturally after hearing about this trip I couldn't refuse the offer. As an avid cyclist and young entrepreneur in the industry this opportunity seemed like the perfect exposure to help start my company. Initially these were my personal reasons for joining the trip. Since I have learned a great deal about FSHD. After having first hand experiences with those directly affected. I am proud to be a member of the C2C for FSHD team for more then just my personal reasons and have been moved by the cause. I hope this trip will draw more attention to this disease and help further research for a cure. There are many obstacles to overcome but the first step is raising awareness.

Donate: Jesse Iozzio C2C18

Core Team Member

Daniel Smith

I am from Greenpoint, Brooklyn at 18 years old, I am tied for the youngest rider on this trip. I just completed my freshman year at St. Joseph's College in Brooklyn, studying to be an accountant. When I was told about Chris Carrino and his foundation for FSHD the first thing that came to my mind was "how can I help?". Frank Carbone came to a family event in early February to talk about the foundation and the bike trip he was planning. Two minutes into it I already agreed to participate and told my good friend Michal about which he agreed almost as quickly as I did. I still find it hard to believe that I will be spending my summer I biking across the country to raise money and awareness for such a great cause! I can not thank the foundation enough for giving me an opportunity to travel the country on bike while getting the word out about FSHD. I promise to be biking my heart out this summer and hopefully with enough sweat and tears we can find a cure!

Donate: Daniel Smith  C2C4

Core Team Member

Michal Karwat

I am officially the youngest cyclist on the trip (just 18) and currently attend Hunter College on the Pre-Med track. I’m really looking forward to this trip not only because it’d be an amazing experience to bike across the United States but also because the cause we’re doing this for is so great. I hope we can raise as much awareness for FSHD as possible and have a lot of fun doing so.

Donate: Michal Karwat C2C5

Core Team Member

Angelo Goutzinopoulos

Hello everyone! For those that don’t know I am the Greek Tank, a core team rider that will be tagging on from stage 2 till the end. I initially joined the team on a whim when FPC (Frank) extended the invitation. I didn’t know much about what I had signed up for but I was looking forward to seeing other parts of the U.S. and just getting to be a part of a feat that very few have done. Over the course of our training rides and various events though, I’ve really learned a lot about Chris Carrino and more importantly about FSHD. Chris is an incredible inspiration to all of us and his will to stand tall and not allow FSHD to hold him back has really left an impression. Just to give you all a little background on myself: I recently graduated from St. Joseph's College with a degree in Biology (woohoo!). On campus I made sure to get involved by being President of the Black Student Association and of The ΕΖ chapter of ΑΦΔ fraternity. I was Co-Captain of the volleyball team, and a member of the Swim Team. I was also honored at the annual leadership luncheon with the inaugural SJC Spirit Award for embodying the spirit of the college and being an active member in all of its aspects. Currently I am taking a year off from academics to work and save up some money for my future endeavors. I aspire to be an Orthopedic Surgeon so that's going to take a lot of saving up! Hopefully you all share the same passion I do for this cause so that as a team we can raise awareness and even better, find a cure!!

Donate: Angelo Goutzinopoulos C2C3

Stage 1 & 6 Team Member

Maciej Siekierski

My name is Maciej Siekierski (pronounced mah-CHAY SICK-yer-SKI) and I will be joining the team for Stage 1 and Stage 6. I grew up in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and currently live in Middle Village, Queens. I have known most of the core team for years, especially our fearless leader Frank, who I have known for 20+ years. My main hobbies are: golf, biking, basketball, and anything to do with being outdoors. I received my undergraduate degree in Business Management from SUNY New Paltz, and my Masters from St. John’s University while working as an assistant director for facilities and operations there. I also worked facility and game-day operations for the NFL New York Jets, Division II C.W. Post (now LIU Post) and Division III SUNY New Paltz. As part of my volunteer work, I take part in the Vincentian Mission Program and serve on the committee for Strides Against Breast Cancer, a part of the American Cancer Society. I met Chris Carrino five years ago, at his annual fundraising dinner at Russo's. Since that day, Chris has not only been an inspiration to me, but his positive energy and constant push towards finding a cure is my driving force to give it my all in every facet of this epic journey.

Donate: Maciej Siekierski C2C1

Stage 1 & 2 Team Member

Javier Bosque

I am starting with core team in Seattle for Stage 1 and biking to Salt Lake City through the completion of Stage 2. I met Frank at St. Joseph’s College when I entered as a Freshman in 2009. My whole life was centered around athletics before entering St. Joe's, so naturally I was set to center my life around sports once again. However, I underwent a “minor” setback my freshman year when I had a heart attack running for the cross country team. It was during my stay at the hospital recovering that I grew closer to Frank. He was a huge help to myself and my family during that time; so much so, that we consider him a member of our family. Around my sophomore year at St. Joe's, we started planning a coast to coast trip to raise money for our new athletic center at SJC, but unfortunately we weren't able to move forward with it. However, we were still fortunate enough to bike from Brooklyn to Cleveland in 10 days that summer. Those 10 days in July provided some of the most memorable moments and experiences of my life. Which is why when Frank approached me with this new opportunity for another chance to go across the country on a bicycle, I simply couldn’t pass it up. Unfortunately, I am not in the same situation as I was in college, having summers off without a worry in the world and plenty of free time. I am currently working for the Animal Care Centers of NYC in Manhattan and they have been gracious enough to have allowed me to take three weeks off in the middle of the busiest season to take part in this once-in-a-lifetime experience. I am extremely grateful to be working for a company that is so accommodating and one that genuinely cares about me. I did not know much about FSHD before this whole event, which is part of the reason a big event like this is necessary. This bike ride is going to bring attention that this cause desperately needs. Hopefully our efforts will bring awareness and possibly help in finding a cure for FSHD. On a fun note, I have been a New Jersey Nets/Brooklyn Nets since 2004 (my original big three: Jason Kidd, Richard Jefferson, and Vince Carter). So when I found out that Chris Carrino, the voice of the Brooklyn Nets, was going to be a part of this experience and we will be doing it for him, it was like a dream come true! Although this trip will be tough and painful, we will be reminded that there are people like Chris who are fighting FSHD every day of their lives while the pain we feel is merely temporary. People like Chris are the true fighters who will inspire us to keep pushing when the going gets rough! Cycling is my favorite sport, which I started during my studies in Europe and I'm a huge fan of Tour de France. This is why our Cross Country trip is like a dream come true for me! Most importantly, we will raise money for people that are afflicted with FSHD that are not able to ride a bike every day. I'm pleased and excited to take part in this unique adventure !!!

Donate: Javier Bosque C2C8

Stage 1 Team Member

Adam Kacperski

I am thrilled and honored to be part of this amazing opportunity to help the Chris Carrino foundation fight for awareness. I graduated from St. Francis College in 2006 with a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology. I enjoys fitness, sports, cooking and traveling. A quote I follow in life that motivates me on a daily basis is "Succeed when all else fails". This quote applies perfectly to what I am trying to do by bicycling across the country to raise awareness for FSHD. I hope to succeed in my efforts to ride every mile during Stage 1 !!!

Donate: Adam Kacperski C2C6

Stage 5 & 6 Team Member

John Slaski

Hello, I am John Slaski. I was born, raised, and have lived all 46 years in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. I graduated from Pace University with a degree in information systems. For over twenty five years I have worked for Prudential Financial, currently as a systems specialist in database analysis. I am an avid cyclist having ridden many miles with Frank P. Carbone over the years. I feel lucky to have been given the chance to participate in the Coast 2 Coast for FSHD event. Time has prohibited me from doing the entire ride, but I'm excited to be able to do the last two stages. I've only learned of Chris' (and other's) plights with FSHD through this adventure, and am humbled to be able to help support an important cause.

Donate: John Slaski C2C13

Stage 3 Team Member

Daniel Bernatowicz

I came to USA from Poland in 1989. I met FPC just as he started St. Stan's Athletic League. For a kid who didn't speak English, surrounded by crime and substance abuse, this was a real treat. We are able to go into the roughest neighborhoods in NYC and play great basketball games. I had no clue where I was, but I was able to communicate with my teammates in Polish, and have a blast. I currently run the League for the last 8 years, with the help of many volunteers, including Ted and Jen Budzilek and Christine Greenwood. We now offer soccer and basketball intramural and CYO programs to kids and teens in the neighborhood. The experience I had at the League was like a trampoline. It allowed me to leap into the great academic success, finishing with a Graduate Degree in Social Work from Fordham University. Few years ahead of FPC, might I add. I guess even FPC can't do everything at the same time...I have a few jobs as I like to spread my energy wide. I mainly work as a mental therapist at St. Marks Place Institute for Mental Health. I am also a representative for Social Security Disability as well as own a DJ/MC company, DBI Productions. Staying home is not my thing. I also have three boys and am married, so am really appreciative to Joanna for giving me the space to ride on Stage 3 and run the League. I want my boys and the rest of children of Greenpoint/Williamsburgh to be able to have such great experience as I did growing up. I hope this bike trip will bring additional awareness to FSHD and hopefully bring an end to it.

Donate: Daniel Bernatowicz C2C21

Stage 3 Team Member

Caitlyn Kakavas

My name is Caitlyn Kakavas. I am 27 years old and I was born and raised by my two loving parents in Bayside, New York. I graduated from Saint Agnes High School in College Point, New York then got my Bachelors in Science at Saint Joseph's College in 2012. Now I am a Recreational Therapist at Margaret Tietz Nursing Home giving the elderly that are short term and long term patient’s the quality of life through leisure pursuits of their likes and interest. I am the oldest of three and will be getting married to my amazing fiancé this November. I love the New York Mets, spending time with my family and friends, and peanut butter. I am an outgoing, athletic individual that is always up for a challenge. In the summer of 2011 I biked from Brooklyn, New York to Cleveland, Ohio in 6 days. That was a personal challenge for myself. Biking in Stage 3 and some of Stage 6 of the C2C for FSHD is much bigger then myself. I feel very fortunate to be able to play the sports I love such as basketball, softball, and biking. Some people are not as fortunate as myself, well I will be riding for them.

Donate: Caitlyn Kakavas C2C14

Stage 3 Team Member

Joanna Dziewit

My name is Joanna Dziewit and I'm joining the core team in Salt Lake City for Stage 3. I grew up playing basketball at St. Stan's in Greenpoint, where I met Frank and many of the other core and stage riders. I continued playing basketball as a Lady Bear at St. Joseph's from 2008 to 2012 and coached for three years after graduating. I've been fortunate enough to work for Capital One Bank for the last two years and am currently a Market Leader in Queens. My junior year at St. Joe's, we started planning a coast to coast trip to raise money for our new gym, but unfortunately we weren't able to move forward with it. We did, on the other hand, bike out to Cleveland, Ohio that summer, which was one of the best experiences of my life. From the day we got back to Brooklyn, I've been asking Frank when we're going back! We went on the trip four months after I had ACL reconstruction surgery, which gave me the opportunity to get back into shape and strengthen my leg. Unfortunately, round two of ACL surgery is coming up at the end of the year after re-tearing it earlier this year in March, and I know it'll be a challenge for me, but it's not something that is stopping me from joining the Team Carrino on this once in a lifetime ride to raise awareness and funds for FSHD. I had the opportunity of meeting Chris Carrino when his niece, Sam Retas, became a Lady Bear my first year of coaching. It was the first time I really heard about FSHD and was able to see how it was affecting Chris on a daily basis. He's a true fighter and an inspiration to everyone that's met him. This trip is giving me the chance to fight for Chris as well as everyone suffering from FSHD!

Donate: Joanna Dziewit C2C15

Stage 1 & 2 Team Member

Anna Jast

Donate: Anna Jast   C2C9

Support Team Leader

Tom Paterek

I was born in Greenpoint, Brooklyn in February 1947. My school years consisted of Holy Family School, P.S. 126 and Queens Vocational High School. When I left high school, I joined the United States Marine Corp. I served four years in the Marines and I am a Viet Nam veteran who served 13 months in Viet Nam. In the late 1970's early 80's I was in the United States Army Reserves for 5 years. I was attached to the 77th Army command at Ft. Totten in Whitestone Queens. After my discharge from the Marines, I was employed by the Brooklyn Union Gas Company (now known as National Grid). I was a gas appliance repair man for 4 years and was promoted into management for the remainder of my 40 year career. My wife and I met when we were just 14 years old and were married in 1967 at the ripe old age of 20. We recently celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary earlier this month. We have 3 adult daughters and 1 adult son. We also have 10 grandchildren, 7 boys and 3 girls. I am extremely proud that Daniel Smith, who is a member of the Core Cycling team, is one of my grandchildren. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Frank Carbone and the Board Members of the Chris Carrino Foundation for giving me the opportunity to be part of this very special team. During this journey I hope to achieve the dual goals of raising both money and awareness to help find a cure for this dreaded disease. I promise to do my very best to ensure the well-being and safety of the team as its support driver.

Donate: Thomas Paterek C2C11

Support Team Member

Jim Healy

I grew up in Middle Village, Queens & still currently live there. I always enjoyed playing & coaching softball. My daughter Kristin, went to St. Joseph’s College and played numerous sports for Frank. This is how Frank became a close friend. Frank has a way of asking so that you can’t say no. I retired from Entenmann’s as a driver, so I had the time to joint his great cause.

Donate: Jim Healy C2C7

Support Team Member

Kristin Haufmann

My name is Kristin “Healy” Kaufmann and I am joining the core team in Salt Lake City Stage 3. I currently live in Bethpage but I am originally from Middle Village, Queens. When my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015 I saw firsthand just how beneficial a solid support system truly is: all of my family, friends and co-workers went well above and beyond the call of duty and helped my mother overcome the illness. So, when Frank Carbone, who is like family in my eyes, approached me to participate in this once in a lifetime experience, I jumped at the chance at paying that kindness afforded to my mother and my family forward. Playing basketball, softball and tennis for Frank at St. Joseph’s from 2002 to 2006 and being a Lady Bear taught me the value of teamwork and working hard towards achieving a goal. {“Once a Lady Bear, Always a Lady Bear”} Now, both Frank and Chris Carrino’s aim is to fight FSHD and I am ready to help them accomplish their mission. I look forward to making the trip with the team from Salt Lake City to Denver with fellow Lady Bears, and I cannot wait to do my part to raising money for FSHD awareness and treatment through this amazing coast to coast bike ride campaign!

Donate: Kristin Haufmann C2C12