Peter Ferentinos, my grandfather, is 75 years old and has accomplished more in his life than most people combined. He started out with almost nothing living in Brooklyn with little money. He was able to build an empire through education and owning his own businesses.
Over the years, he has overcome so many obstacles, but his biggest was his fight against cancer. He was diagnosed with cancer when I was in high school, and I was never so scared for him in my life. The backbone of our family always seemed so in control of his environment, and to him cancer was just another hurdle in his life. He treated cancer with the same respect he treated life; hard work, perseverance, and the belief that he can beat this.
His No. 1 change in his life was to choose to eat healthier. Being Italian comes with a huge passion and love for pasta, bread, and a lot of other foods that are not healthy unless moderated. Although cancer did cause him to loose some muscle mass and hair, he decided that once he was healthy again he would make his changes a lifestyle. Peter lost another 50 pounds of excessive body weight to keep him as healthy as possible.
Now he has dedicated his life to promoting education and health by being a part of the Board of Trustees for NYIT and Stony Brook University. I thank him every day for paving the way for a wonderful, fulfilling life.