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Advocates Urge Officials To Light Empire State Building For Childhood Cancer

NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — Childhood cancer advocates have been lobbying to light up the Empire State Building in gold, but building officials have said no. Advocates want to know why.

As CBS 2′s Alice Gainer reported, the building has been lit up for various causes and reasons. It’s been purple for World Prematurity Day, and has been lit up for Pride Week, the Chinese Lunar New Year, and even the Subway Series.

One color that it won’t be lit up in anytime soon is gold.

“It will be two years on the 20th of August that Olivia has left us. We are heartbroken,” Enza Boccuzi said.

Boccuzi’s daughter Olivia died of a brain tumor at the age of 2.

There has been a big social media push for the cause. Boccuzi’s daughter wrote a post on the Empire State Building’s Facebook page, urging them to go gold, but it was removed.

She, like many others, has been taken aback by what they perceive to be a snub.

“People would say ‘hey what is gold and what does that mean?’ And it would create a conversation that is really necessary,” Boccuzi said.

As part of the ‘Gold World Project’ advocates have been lobbying to have major landmarks across the country illuminated in gold on various days in September to raise awareness of childhood cancer.

“It also helps us to send the message that more funding is needed for research,” Camille Loccisano, Founder, Frankie’s Mission, said.

Loccisano lost her son to cancer when he was 17.

“I don’t want to see another child suffer the way my son suffered,” she said.

Building officials said that they receive more lighting applications than there are days of the year and that they can’t light the building for all who apply.

“Any lighting request via petitions and/or social media campaigns is automatically not considered,” they said.

Advocates have urged them to light up the building.

“I think most people know nothing about childhood cancer before it walks into their lives,” mother Nicole Kabel said.

On Friday night, the Empire State Building will be lit up in green, white, and orange in observance of India Day.

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