Seneca Falls, NY, April 27th, 2019


Seneca Falls, NY, March 20, 2019 ——

Members of the Seneca Falls community are being asked to nominate a person to receive the annual Antonio Varacalli Day Award. The award will be given to a resident whom is perceived by their friends and neighbors to be a good citizen and hero to the community in which they live.

Like so many other immigrants, Antonio Varacalli and his father Dominick, emigrated from Italy in the early 1900’s. They intended to find work and save enough money to bring the rest of their family to Seneca Falls, NY.
On April 12, 1917, Antonio Varacalli drowned while rescuing a young woman. Ruth Dunham, had apparently jumped into the Seneca Falls barge canal trying to commit suicide. He was pronounced dead and his death certificate stated that he “drowned while attempting to rescue another person.” He was 22 years old.

“Antonio was just a regular guy who on a particular day made the decision to be a good citizen by stepping up and selflessly help another person.” said Becky Bly, one of the members of the It’s A Wonderful Life – Antonio Varacalli Day Committee, sponsoring Antonio Varacalli Day – Celebration of Heroes scheduled for April 27, 2019. “Each year we ask the community to name a local hero, a good citizen, who in their eyes emulates Antonio Varacalli.”
The award will be presented on the Bridge St. bridge near the site where Varacalli lost his life. A brief ceremony will be held for the reading of the Antonio Varacalli Day Proclamation and the ringing of “The Bells of Bedford Falls”. This will begin at 11am on Saturday April 27.

Individuals wishing to nominate a hero can pick up a nomination form in Seneca Falls at S.F. Visitor Center/Museum of Waterways & Industry – 89 Fall Street, from the Downtown Deli – 53 Fall Street, or fill out the form below.

All nominations must be received by Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Your Phone Number (required)

Name of Award Nominee

in fewer than 150 words, please provide support why you consider this person a "hero."