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Hurricane Sandy directly effects UConn community

Family members of UConn student trapped in attic for over twelve hours

By Olivia Balsinger
On November 8, 2012

  • Tom Haggerty, Clive Richards, Faiven Feshazion, Fritz Chery, Matt Burrill and Yoomi Thompson present their platforms at the USG presidential debate in the Student Union Lobby on Wednesday night. Mariya Yukhymenko

A UConn law student was affected more than most by Hurricane Sandy's destruction.
Jennifer Cioffi is originally from Midland Beach on Staten Island, where she lived with her mother and father, Sonia and Dennis Cioffi.
"Flood waters from Hurricane Sandy submerged their one-story home to the ceiling in less than ten minutes," Cioffi said in an email detailing her family's experience in the storm. "They barely made it into the attic, and spent over 12 hours huddled together in wet pajamas with their two pugs."
According to an article on, Staten Island was very hurt by the sweep through of the hurricane. The article said more than half of the deaths in New York City as a result of Sandy occurred in Staten Island.
Luckily, Cioffi said, her parents were rescued by a boat the following day. However, the hurricane still put them in a rough situation.
"They are undoubtedly grateful to be alive, but they lost everything," said Cioffi. "My father didn't even have shoes as they stumbled to my uncle's house five blocks away."
According to Cioffi, her mother and father had lived in their home for 26 years and only had two years left on their mortgage before Hurricane Sandy plummeted through Staten Island.
Cioffi has set up a donation fund to help her parents financially during their difficult time. She is asking for the help of both the UConn Law School and the UConn community at large. She said she has already had a lot of support.
"I would like to thank several of my law school classmates who supported me that night as I frantically tried to contact rescue services and advise my panic-stricken parents," she said. "Without your advice and support, I don't know if they would be alive today. I am forever grateful."
If you would like to make a donation to Cioffi's fund and help a fellow Husky and her family in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, visit

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