Published on December 04, 2018

Milford Regional’s Annual Tree Lighting Event Celebrates Hope and Life

Nearly 200 people attended the annual Tree of Life ceremony at Milford Regional Medical Center Monday night, celebrating life and paying tribute to those who have survived cancer, battled the disease or have been touched by cancer.

This year, the annual event raised more than $12,000 for the Oliva Fund for Cancer Care at Milford Regional. The fund is named in honor of the Oliva Family of Milford and provides oncology patients with support during their treatment at the Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center at Milford Regional.

The evening included a performance by the Very Merry Dickens Carolers, as well as remarks from Edward J. Kelly, president and CEO of Milford Regional; Peter F. Orio, III, DO; Michael Constantine, MD; and Mona Kaddis, MD.

Gold and silver tribute angels were displayed as a reminder of loved ones affected by cancer and tribute luminaries lit a path from the hospital to where the Tree of Life was lit. Each light on the tree symbolizes a loved one affected by cancer, and the tree remains lit during the holiday season to serve as a reminder of hope in the fight against cancer.

In recognition of how their lives have been personally touched by cancer and for their dedication to helping patients, the tree was lit in honor of the Oliva Family – Anthony “Babe” Oliva and his wife, Mary, who is a two-time cancer survivor; daughter Gina Oliva Tarolli, who is also a cancer survivor; son Nick Oliva and his wife, Dawna; and grandson Zachary Oliva.

“We come to this ceremony every year; it is a great start to the holiday season,” says Gina Oliva Tarolli. “It is important for us to continue to give back to the community, and we are very humbled to have the fund named after our family.”

To make an online donation to the Oliva Fund please visit or contact the Milford Regional Healthcare Foundation Office at (508) 422-2228. 

Oliva Family photo

The Oliva Family of Milford had the honor of lighting the tree during this year’s Tree of Life ceremony. Seated from left to right: Anthony “Babe” and Mary Oliva; standing (left to right) Lillian Stanas, Zachary Oliva, Dawna Oliva, Nick Oliva and Gina Oliva Tarolli.












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