John F. Montanaro III was born on August 10, 1991. He had a liver transplant when he was 11 weeks old, and grew as any typical, healthy little boy. He loved dinosaurs, trains, the color blue, and chocolate! His heart was captured mostly, though, by dogs! His love for them was immediate and everlasting.
In August, 2002, John was given his first dog. He was a white English Labrador Retriever and John named him “Yogi”, after his favorite baseball player, Yogi Berra. The two became inseparable.
In January, 2005, at the age of thirteen, John was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). Later that year, Yogi was diagnosed with skin cancer. The two went through chemotherapy together, serving as a loving and supportive friend for each other. Yogi’s treatment ended after eight months, but John endured multiple relapses that caused his treatment to be on-going.
In September, 2008, John, while continuing with his valiant fight against leukemia, began his senior year of high school. He created a senior project about dogs which included creating a video to advertise his one-week, in-school fundraising effort. John wanted to raise money for pets whose owners couldn’t afford the oncology treatment that their sick pet needed to survive. He raised over $1100 and helped to save 12 pets! This filled John’s heart with so much happiness. Ocean State Veterinary Specialists established The John Montanaro Fund to honor John for his generous and untiring efforts.
On April 26, 2011, John lost his battle with leukemia. John’s final wish was for those who loved him to continue to contribute to the fund and help carry on the work that he began.
The blue dichroic Murano glass heart jewelry pieces represent all of the love that John had for his faith, family, friends and animals. The Morning Within the Dark written by John's older sister, Lenore M. Montanaro, lovingly memorializes her brother through thought-provoking poems. All of the proceeds from the sale of this jewelry and the book will be donated to the Ocean State Veterinary Specialists in The John Montanaro Fund.