Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital has dedicated Maria’s Garden, a 20,000-square-foot area near its entrance that features flowers, shrubs, walkways, seating areas, a life-size chess/checkerboard, a giant teddy bear and a six-foot tall dog crafted by world-renowned sculpture artist Yoshitomo Nara.
Maria’s Garden is the vision of Brenda and John Fareri, the hospital’s founding benefactors. The hospital and garden are named in honor of their late youngest daughter, Maria. The garden was funded by Pamal Broadcasting’s 100.7 WHUD and the family of Jim and Kathy Morrell.
Maria Fareri was only 13 when she died of rabies in 1995. She had been hospitalized at the Westchester Medical Center. After her death, her parents learned that she had made a special wish as part of a school project: “For the health and well-being of all the children in the world.” Fulfilling that wish was at the core of the effort to create Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla.