We revealed the Rhode Island 2023 Remarkable Woman today on The Rhode Show and the tears were flowing.

CONGRATULATIONS to Cathy Andreozzi, Nexstar’s Rhode Island 2023 Remarkable Woman.

Cathy touched our hearts with her remarkable story and we feel honored to share it with you, our viewers.

Cathy’s Story

March 26, 2003, was a spring day like any other. Sitting in the living room waiting for Tori and her older brother Rob to come home from school, a warm spring breeze and sounds of a typical afternoon came in from the open front door. Suddenly, riding on that breeze came Rob’s anguished scream. Running outside to follow those screams would reveal the source of his anguish. Tori was lying seemingly lifeless on the ground, the victim of a hit-and-run accident caused by a drunk driver.

The next several hours at the hospital were a blur while neurosurgeons, orthopedists, radiologists, intensive care doctors, general surgeons, and plastic surgeons worked tirelessly to help Tori. Finally, days later, the Andreozzi Family received some concrete news: Tori’s body was stable and her physical injuries would heal, but she sustained a traumatic brain injury that wouldn’t. Life was forever changed. Dreams of dances, graduation, college, a wedding, and grandchildren faded in an instant as hopes for Tori to breathe on her own, make eye contact, and recognize her family came to the forefront.

The lives of Tori and her family were irrevocably changed, but those who love her most searched for a way to let Tori keep doing what was most important to her – helping others. Out of this desire, the Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation was born so that in some way, Tori could continue to make a positive difference in the world.

About The Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation & Mission

The Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation works to empower people to make good choices, protect other families from the devastating consequences of poor decision-making, and, for those whom it can’t protect, tries to make a difficult journey easier.

Recognizing that there is a choice in every moment, finding the courage to make a difference, and sustaining hope for the future.

What really touched us at the station were the amount of nomination entries that Cathy received. All sharing something remarkable and incredible about her, here are some examples:

“For nearly 20 years Cathy Andreozzi has cared for her daughter Tori. On March 26, 2003, as she and her brother got off a school bus and were walking to their home in West Warwick, a drunk driver changed everything. And the future that should have belonged to Tori Lynn Andreozzi was gone in that instant. Tori was not expected to survive, but she did. Doctors even told Cathy to put her in an institution; instead, Andreozzi took her daughter home and cared for her full-time, and then found ways to bring the world to Tori. And for 20 years, as hope her beacon, Cathy gave Tori every human experience she could. Dreaming that someday, science and medicine would reverse the trauma and damage. Sadly, on Nov. 1, 2022, Tori died. But for the efforts of her mom, Tori’s legacy is extraordinary. Cathy established the Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation to work with national and state programs to educate young people about good decision-making, promote legislation to improve highway safety, draw awareness to traumatic brain injuries, and support families dealing with tragedy. The foundation also funds DanceAbility, a wheelchair ballroom dance program, developed with the Fred Astaire Dance Studios of Narragansett. But more than that, Cathy shared Tori with the world in a way that was unexpected and tireless. Cathy brought Tori everywhere and made her a part of everything. Tori’s smile lit up the room and Cathy’s inexhaustible positivity was like a force of nature. All moms are special. But Cathy Andreozzi makes your head spin. She deserves every honor, recognition, or award that there may be. Her love for Tori translated into a love for humanity and a plea to do better. And that may be her defining legacy. Please, respectfully, consider Cathy Andreozzi for this prestigious honor of 2023 Remarkable Woman”

“Ms. Andreozzi is the President of the Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation, which works through its five arms to educate young people about good decision-making, informs the community about ways it can make a difference, promotes legislation that improves highway safety, draws awareness to traumatic brain injury and supports families dealing with tragedy. On March 26, 2003, Ms Andreiozzi’s daughter was the victim of a hit-and-run accident caused by a drunk driver. Though she suffered serious injuries, she survived. However, Tori Lynn’s life, and that of her family’s, was changed forever from a severed traumatic brain injury, from which she could not recover. In honor of Tori Lynn, who helped others whenever she could, her family established the Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation in Narragansett, RI. Cathy has honored her daughter by serving as the President of the Foundation for nearly 20 years. Recently, on November 1, 2022, sadly Tori succumbed to her injuries, after 19 years of serving as the driving force and motivator behind the work of the foundation that bears her name. The foundation continues on, under Cathy’s devoted stewardship, lighting the way to educate people about the dangers of drunk driving and the devastating impact of traumatic brain injuries on a victim. But “The Ripple Effect” campaign against drunk driving, developed to honor Tori,  continues to work its magic, with Cathy at the helm. Further information about the important work that Cathy Andreozzi and the Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation has accomplished and continues to support can be found on the foundation’s website.”

We were so honored to award Cathy with Nexstar’s Rhode Island 2023 Remarkable Woman honor.

Also, another huge congratulations to our incredible top 4 finalists: Cathy Andreozzi, Tonya Maselli, Ali Hornung and Catalina Martinez.

Remarkable Women is part of a nationwide Nexstar Media initiative to honor the influence that women have had on public policy, social progress and quality of life.

WATCH: Cathy Andreozzi discusses her experience with the Remarkable Women event (Story continues below.)

WPRI 12 featured and celebrated local women in Southern New England that inspire, lead and forge the way for other women. It’s not just about one day or month; it’s about what they do, day in and day out, and to celebrate these women properly, we will highlight and recognize their accomplishments. We will not only tell their stories, but also honor the women in these stories.

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