STATEN ISLAND, NY — Students from PS 57 and Staten Island’s own Teddy Atlas, legendary boxing trainer and sports commentator, celebrated the donation of about 600 hams to the Dr. Theodore Atlas Foundation food pantry. The gift came from Stop & Shop and its partner, Hormel Foods, in a presentation at the New Dorp store on Tuesday morning.
The hams, now in the pantry’s inventory just in time for Easter, are slated for families across the borough. The Teddy Atlas Foundation is a not-for-profit with a mission to help children.
A MOTIVATIONAL SPEECH IN THE SUPERMARKET AISLES
Atlas spoke to reps from Stop & Shop and the Concord school with the supermarket’s floral section in the backdrop.
He said, “In boxing, we have a great heavyweight champion. His name was Evander Holyfield — and he was one of my favorites. And he had a nickname… ‘The Real Deal.’ You guys are the real deal for me, that’s the way I look at it. Hormel and Stop & Shop: you get it done.”
Atlas talked about his father, Dr. Theodore Atlas, for whom his foundation is named. He said, “For me, the greatest thing about success is the opportunities that success gives you — to help other people. And that is what’s so special about these people, these organizations — they actually take that success and they give it back.”
He added, “My father practiced medicine on Staten Island 55 years. He founded two hospitals — the first one before this big bridge [the Verrazzano] got built. A lot of people didn’t like the bridge getting built but it allowed more hands to come over, so that’s a good thing.”
Atlas said that first hospital housed 22 beds “impacting the people in the most need.” He also noted that on his father’s he one day off — Thursdays — the good doctor would grocery shop for patients, mostly seniors. Dr. Atlas knew they didn’t have enough food for when they returned home.
“That’s what he did on his day off. Well, you guys are doing it now and helping to keep that tradition going with delivering some food. It’s it’s not a Thursday — we did it on a Tuesday — but it’s gonna get done,” said a grateful Atlas. I have expressed his appreciation for “good people caring about others and helping us do what we do.
He concluded, “Like I said — you’re the real deal.”
“Stop & Shop is pleased to continue its Easter tradition of making a significant donation to the Teddy Atlas Foundation to support our neighbors in need,” said Stefanie Shuman, manager of external communications at Stop & Shop. “We are grateful for our partner at Hormel Foods, who assisted with the donation, as well as for the Teddy Atlas Foundation for its commitment to improving the quality of life of all Staten Island residents.”
The Stop & Shop Supermarket Company LLC, an Ahold Delhaize USA Company, employs 58,000 associates in over 400 stores throughout the Northeast. With its various donation campaigns on Staten Island and company-wide, the chain says it “is committed to making an impact in its communities by fighting hunger, supporting our troops, and investing in pediatric cancer research to help find a cure.”
“The Dr. Atlas Foundation believes that all people should feel loved and cared for,” Atlas said. “So once again we have joined with Stop & Shop, Hormel Foods, and other community partners to provide hams so that Staten Island families in need can have a traditional Easter meal.”
According to the US Census Bureau, 8.3% of Staten Island residents live below the federal poverty line; 1 in 7 New York City residents are food insecure.
Stop & Shop is open for Easter Sunday from 7 am to 5 pm
Pamela Silvestri is Advance Food Editor. She can be reached at email@example.com.