NYC’s Animal Medical Center Ninth Annual Living Legends Luncheon

May 10, 2017

Contact Information:
Barbara Ross, Ross Public Relations,, 201-236-1771

The Animal Medical Center (AMC) held its Ninth Annual Living Legends Luncheon at The Harmonie Club today to honor three very special companion animals: Crunch, a handsome Pit Bull mix; Princess, a beautiful 8-year-old cat and Sugar, an American Bulldog. The event was co-chaired by Dorothy Goldstein, Alison Minton, Kane Nussbaum, Joanne Ronson, Carol Sandow, Petra Slater, Helene Stein, Marquam Wolfe, and Janet York. Among the nearly 200 guests: Nancy Kissinger, Betsy Gotbaum, Elaine Langone, Kathy Rayner, Donna Acquavella, Lisa Schiff and Emilia Fanjul.

“The Living Legends Luncheon provides AMC with a unique platform to showcase some of the amazing work that goes on at the hospital every day, said CEO Kathryn Coyne. “And, as important, it celebrates the enduring bond that exists between people and their pets.”

Crunch, Princess and Sugar all managed to survive enormous health challenges and are thriving today because of their owners’ love and commitment and the extraordinary care and treatment they received from the specialty veterinarians at AMC’s Cancer Institute and the Interventional Radiology/Interventional Endoscopy, Cardiology, Emergency Care, Surgery and Anesthesiology Services.

During the event, longtime Trustee Tina Santi Flaherty announced the creation of a special award at AMC, the Jackie Santi Flaherty Award for Courage, as a tribute to her beloved Jackie, a beautiful Labrador. The award will be given annually to a dog who has demonstrated bravery throughout an illness and treatment. “AMC is grateful to Tina for this meaningful tribute to Jackie and for her continued support of the Tina Santi Flaherty Rehabilitation & Fitness Service,” said Ms. Coyne.

Since its inception nine years ago, the Living Legends Luncheon has raised nearly $300,000 to benefit the Animal Medical Center.

About Animal Medical Center
Established in 1910, the Animal Medical Center is dedicated to providing compassionate and collaborative care to animals and to leading the advancement of veterinary medicine through innovative clinical research and education. For more information, visit

AMC’s Living Legends Honorees
**Crunch, a 7-1/2 year old Pit Bull mix, was being fostered by a wonderful family when she was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer that required a double mastectomy. Thanks to AMC to the Rescue, a fund that subsidizes treatment for pets in the care of rescue groups, Crunch was able to receive this life-saving surgery. Shortly thereafter, she became a permanent member of the family that was fostering her.

**When Valerie’s 8-year old cat, Princess, suddenly suffered a seizure, her veterinarian diagnosed her with heart failure and recommended she be rushed to the Animal Medical Center to see a cardiologist. Upon arrival, Princess was close to death. A team of AMC specialists performed surgery to implant a human pacemaker (they don’t exist for cats). The disruption to her heart is extremely rare; this is only the third case encountered by AMC cardiologists since 2014. Princess’s surgery was a success and she continues to live a happy life with Valerie, who was able to afford this treatment through help from AMC’s Patient Assistance Fund.

**Sugar was 5.5 years old when her owner, Stephen, rushed her to a local referral hospital in Massachusetts. She was diagnosed with a substantial blood clot in her vena cava, along with a tumor on her adrenal gland. Veterinarians gave a poor prognosis for Sugar and Stephen was told to let nature take its course. Not prepared to let Sugar go, Stephen spoke with the head of AMC’s head of interventional radiology, who assured him that Sugar could be saved. After a complicated surgery to remove the blood clot and tumor, Sugar returned home to Stephen, as promised, and is doing well.

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