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Anna Finishes Walk To Montauk For Autism, Raises $5,800

Next, Anna hopes to participate in a virtual Walk Across America.

Anna Tuzzolo walking across the Ponquogue Bridge Credit: Patty Tuzzolo
Anna Tuzzolo walking across the Ponquogue Bridge Credit: Patty Tuzzolo
Anna Tuzzolo, an East Quogue girl on a mission — to virtually walk the 90-miles from her hometown to Montauk Point by January — reached her goal and raised $5,800  for the Flying Point Foundation for Autism.

According to her Facebook page, Anna's Walk to Montauk, "Anna completed her walk and she would like to thank everyone who helped her attain her goal. The outpouring of support from family, friends, fellow campers, community members and teachers, and complete strangers was amazing. So if you joined her for a walk, made a donation, honked when you drove by, or simply offered words of encouragement, we thank you."

A YouTube video was made to celebrate Anna's accomplishment. 

Tuzzolo, a 13-year-old who was diagnosed with autism at the age of three, walked to give back to a Water Mill camp that she has come to love. 

For the past four summers, Tuzzolo has attended the five-year-old Camp Flying Point, which is run by the Flying Point Foundation for Autism and founded by Kim Covell, a mom with a son who is autistic. 

Tuzzolo's mission to raise awareness and money started after her mom, Patty, said Anna walked a 5K last fall with one of her teachers. 

At first, Patty said, she wasn't sure if her daughter was going to be able to finish the 5K or even get out of the car to start the race, but to her surprise, Anna woke up that morning ready to go, finishing the race with her teacher by her side. 

"She was so excited," said Patty. "For people who don't love crowds and noise, she just loved it."

Patty, who is a Flying Point Foundation for Autism board member, wanted to find a way to channel her daughter's new-found love and at the same time raise awareness and money for Flying Point. She soon came up with the idea for her daughter to virtually walk 90 miles to Montauk with friends and relatives at the East Quogue Park and over the Ponquogue bridge on weekends and after school.

"People have been very generous," said Patty.

Patty hopes that her daughter will not only be able to raise more money as word gets out about her mission, but that her daughter will inspire others to get out and walk with her.

To garner support, Patty posted updates with photos and walking times on a Facebook page she recently started for her daughter.

Patty anticipates that next, her daughter, who graduated the East Quogue Elementary School and is currently attended Center Moriches Middle School, has her sights set on a virtual Walk Across America in April, which is Autism Awareness month. 

Patty hopes to make that walk a community event, with community members logging walking miles over the month to reach the goal.

To like Anna's Facebook page, click here and to donate online. Donations are also being accepted by mail. Mail to The Flying Point Foundation, 25 Farmstead Lane, Watermill, NY 11976.

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