Kait's Angels adds Buddy Bench

Kait’s Angels adds Buddy Bench to Aquebogue Elementary School


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Kait’s Angels, a North Fork organization created in memory of Kaitlyn Doorhy, donated a new “Buddy Benches” on Friday at Aquebogue Elementary School.
Students from first to fourth grade gathered for an assembly as the Buddy Bench was officially unveiled.
Darla Doorhy, Kaitlyn’s mother, said elementary schools at Riley Avenue, Oysterponds, New Suffolk, Southold and Greenport will all be receiving a Buddy Bench.
“It’s pretty special because it is the first one Kait’s Angels is doing as an organization on the North Fork,” she said.
A second grader from York, Penn., first created the Buddy Bench idea after deciding to help lonely classmates at his school’s playground.
Lisa Fox, the president of Mattituck Cutchogue PTA, pitched installing a Buddy Bench locally last year as a way for students to come together when they might otherwise feel alone. In November 2014, the “Kaitlyn Doorhy Memorial Buddy Bench” was unveiled at Cutchogue East Elementary School.
Kait’s Angels picked up the idea from there.
Aquebogue principal Phil Kent, who said he knew Kaitlyn from living in Cutchogue, said she was an example of living life to the fullest.
“She loved to be amongst friends and kids,” he said.
During the assembly, he spoke to the students about what the bench represented.
“You can use it and access when you are looking for a buddy or to sit down and calm down,” he said. “You can say I need a friend today.”
Kaitlyn was a 2012 Mattituck High School graduate, honor student, varsity soccer player, accomplished musician, cheerleader, volunteer and 2011 Mattituck Strawberry Queen who died at the age of 20 in 2014 when she was struck by car near her sorority house at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn.
Top Photo Caption: Kait’s Angels board members Laurie Italia (from left), Mary Lou Araneo, and Kait’s parents Darla and Joe Doohry. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
See more photos of the Buddy Bench below:
Aquebogue Elementary School third and fourth graders in the cafeteria for the "Buddy Bench" assembly Friday afternoon. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
Aquebogue Elementary School third and fourth graders in the cafeteria for the “Buddy Bench” assembly Friday afternoon. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
Fourth graders Samantha Davis and Ja'Dah William became friends Friday at recess. Samantha told the principal Phil Kent she was having trouble making friends. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
Fourth graders Samantha Davis and Ja’Dah William became friends Friday at recess. Samantha told the principal Phil Kent she was having trouble making friends. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
The "Buddy Bench" in honor of Kaitlyn Doorhy. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

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