As the sun set on July 19, 2023, we gathered at the Berkeley Heights YMCA for a solemn yet heartfelt commemoration marking the first anniversary of the passing of a beloved member of our Y family, Cathy Pitingolo. Her lasting impact goes beyond her extraordinary tenure with us, reaching deep into the essence of our organization and the community we serve.
Cathy's journey with the YMCA began in 2001, and her unyielding passion for service was apparent across various roles. From leading classes in the Youth Department to dedicating hours at the Kid Zone and membership front desk, Cathy was a beacon of commitment and community spirit. Her time as a board member, and eventually President of the Berkeley Heights Community Pool At The YMCA, paved the way for a fruitful partnership between the YMCA and the pool, introducing memorable Healthy Kids Day events and exciting summer camp experiences.
A year after Cathy Pitingolo's passing, her spirit continues to energize the Berkeley Heights YMCA, a dynamic hub of community activity and wellness that she helped shape. In dedication to her relentless service, her family planted a tree, standing tall as a symbol of Cathy's deep-rooted values and her enduring influence. Her legacy of resilience, community, and service remains the driving force behind our organization.
The Pitingolo/Twill family’s bond with our YMCA is truly inspiring. With Cathy's brother, Peter Twill, serving on the Branch Advisory Committee at the Summit Y, her sister Julie working in the Kid Zone, and Mary Twill who was on the planning committee for our Extra Special Prom and a member of the Summit Elks. Their contributions mirror the same community spirit that Cathy embodied.
At the Summit Area YMCA, we are more than just a facility - we are a family. Today, we reflect on and honor a vital part of our family, Cathy Pitingolo, whose legacy continues to motivate us in our mission to strengthen the foundations of our community, one person, one family at a time.
In 1886, we were founded as the Young Men's Christian Association, but today, we are The Y. An association that values, and is made stronger by, its diverse people. We stand for youth development, healthy living and social responsibility — For a better us. We are committed to creating equal opportunity for all regardless of gender, age, disability, income, ethnicity, sexual orientation or religious affiliation. We strive to create a welcoming and inclusive culture in which our four core values — responsibility, honesty, caring and respect — are integral to everyday operations.
Each year, as one of the area’s leading 501(c)3 charitable organizations, the Summit Area YMCA serves more than 15,000 individuals with our free and fee-based programs and services in an area spanning the New Jersey communities of Berkeley Heights, Gillette, Millburn, New Providence, Short Hills, Springfield, Stirling and Summit. Our history is rooted in working side-by-side with our neighbors to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Through the generosity of our members, donors, and partners, we are able to offer financial assistance for our programs and services to those in need.