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March of Dimes is ‘Why We Have Our Two Boys Today,’ Mother Says at Awards Event

By Colin McEvoy on October 27, 2017

A day of joy and excitement turned into one of fear as Anita Desai, pregnant with identical twins, unexpected went into labor during her baby shower, at only 20 weeks.

The doctors were able to stop the labor, but complications continued throughout the pregnancy, and the two boys were born eight weeks early. An emergency C-section was necessary because they were too small to be delivered naturally.

Cyrus was born 3 pounds, 12 ounces, and Sam was born 2 pounds, 13 ounces, and both required weeks in the neonatal intensive care unit, according to their father, Darius Desai. But both boys survived, and are 12 years old today.

“In the NICU, they started talking about all the treatments, all the steroid injections and heel sticks, and that’s all from research from the March of Dimes,” Anita Desai said. “I feel very strongly that the March of Dimes research is why we have the two boys that we have today.

The Desai family were featured as the ambassador family at the 24th Annual March of Dimes Commercial & Industrial Real Estate Awards, held Oct. 27 at DeSales University Center in Center Valley. More than 450 people were in attendance.

The event raised more than $88,000 this year, and has raised more than $1.3 million since the Lehigh Valley event’s inception in 1994, with proceeds going toward helping improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality.

“Our success happen because of people just like you,” said Christa Duelberg-Kraftician, chairwoman of the March of Dimes Commercial & Industrial Real Estate Awards Committee. “Through your support, we all have the ability to join this important movement, and together we can help give every baby a fighting chance.”

Colin McEvoy, Director of Communications with the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC), is a member of the March of Dimes Commercial & Industrial Real Estate Awards Committee.

The event’s honorees this year were Hamilton Crossings, which was recognized as Project of the Year, and Charles Marcon, President of Duggan and Marcon, Inc., who won Individual/Organization of the Year.

Marcon joined the family construction business in 1967, and became its President in 1983, and helped establish it as one of the largest employers of construction workers in the region.

It is the largest commercial finishes contractor in the Lehigh Valley, with a portfolio including such projects as Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem, Lehigh Valley Mall, and the Allentown campus of St. Luke’s University Hospital.

“I attribute my success to a lot of hard work, a lot of focus, a lot of diligence, but also a lot of luck,” Marcon said. “I think we have a tendency to overlook that luck factor. I remember an athlete one time saying the harder he worked, the luckier he got, and I feel that way in my case.”

With Hamilton Crossings, the Goldenberg Group and TCH Development have transformed a blighted former mine site into a first-class retail project creating hundreds of retail jobs and more than $1 million in new property tax revenue.

The project, located on 72 acres along the Route 222 Bypass in Lower Macungie Township, is a 559,345 square foot commercial town center anchored by a Target shopping center, as well as the first Costco Wholesale Club and Whole Foods Market in the Lehigh Valley.

The award was accepted by Tim Harrison, owner of TCH Development, and Ken Goldenberg, president, founder and CEO of the Goldenberg Group.

“Hamilton Crossings is a case study that illustrates a talented development team and a group of determined, creative and intelligent public officials, planners, regulators, tenants, and neighbors – working and collaborating together and listening respectfully to one another – can transform an abandoned mine site into a vibrant, welcoming, and successful community asset,” Harrison said.

Funds raised by the Commercial & Industrial Real Estate Awards help support prenatal wellness programs, research grants, neonatal intensive care unit family support programs, and advocacy efforts for mothers and babies.

Today, one in every ten U.S. infants is born premature, according to the organization. The March of Dimes is committed to funding research to find the answers to problems that continue to threaten the lives and health of babies.

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