Ferriero's friends on the frontlines

Tammy and her boys: Tammy Ferriero, center, is surrounded by her sons — Shane Ferriero, left; Chet Ferriero, right; and Chris McAuliffe, in front. Ferriero is battling cancer with the support of her family. A fund-raiser to help cover medical expenses will be held on Saturday, Nov. 9, from 5 to 8 p.m. at The Hofbrau on Warners Lake in East Berne.

ALTAMONT — The nine women who work at the Re-Nue Spa share a bond, and, when one of their own is hurting, they want to help.
Tammy Ferriero, a stylist at the spa, is battling ovarian cancer.

“It’s hard for everyone to see her going through this,” said Rhonda Flansburg who owns the spa with her husband, Barry Gasparro. He’s pitching in to help, too, as are Jill Martin, Wendy Pollard, and Kelly Hess.

“She would never want anyone to go through this,” Flansburg went on, “but her opinion is, she’s strong and she can handle it.”

Ferriero’s cancer spread from her ovaries to other organs that had to be surgically removed, Flansburg said, and now she faces 18 months of chemotherapy. “She is a courageous woman…She still maintains a positive attitude and loves spending time with her family,” Flansburg went on. “Her resilience is amazing.”

Over the years, Flansburg and her spa have held fund-raisers for many causes, putting in pink hair extensions for breast-cancer awareness or collecting gently used prom gowns for girls who otherwise couldn’t afford them.

But the fund-raiser for Ferriero — on Nov. 9 at The Hofbrau on Warners Lake — has hit home.

“It’s startling, really,” said Flansburg. “We work with her on a regular basis. It touches our heart very much. When you work so closely with someone, you want the best for them; everyone is gathering together.”

Kevin Demarest has provided his Hofbrau on Warners Lake as the venue for the event. The Bavarian-style restaurant is a popular Helderberg destination.

The rock-and-roll band Bandboozled has volunteered to entertain.

Donations are being sought for an auction where bidders will buy tickets for chances to win items.

Asked what will happen to the funds that are raised on Nov. 9, Flansburg said, “The money will go to whatever she needs. She’ll endure chemotherapy for 18 months. She has insurance but there are co-pays.”

Flansburg gave one example of an unmet need: Ferriero felt nauseous recently and was prescribed medicine to alleviate it. “It cost over $300,” said Flansburg. “She didn’t get it. She felt it was too expensive.”

Flansburg concluded, “Everyone knows someone affected by cancer. We work with Tammy so it is someone close to us that is going through this….It’s not easy for anyone — the person going through it or the loved ones standing by, watching it happen.

“We love Tammy and want the best for her.”


A benefit for Tammy Ferriero will be held on Saturday, Nov. 9, from 5 to 8 p.m. at The Hofbrau, 141 Warners Lake Road, East Berne, NY  12059.

There will be light fare, soda, beer, and a cash bar as well as an auction and a 50-50 drawing. The band Bandboozled will provide live music.

Tickets, which cost $20, may be purchased in advance at Re-Nue Spa at 119 Maple Ave. in Altamont. For more information, call Rhonda Flansburg at 861-5723.

Contributions may also be made to Tammy Ferriero, Post Office Box 229, Altamont, NY 12009.

More Regional News

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  • The age group with the highest number of cases, at 480, remains those between the ages 20 to 29. Albany County Health Commissioner Elizabeth Whalen said she is concerned about that age group “in terms of spread and in terms of more potential infection.”

  • School leaders planning reopening are “repurposing” resources as they face added expenses to keep students and staff safe from COVID-19. At the same time, Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy is urging residents to show support for the Democratic federal stimulus plan that includes funds for state and local governments.

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