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Larisa Karassik Foundation LARISA “STRONG” “Those who wish to sing always find a song.”
Copyright 2018 Larisa Karassik Foundation Inc.  All rights reserved.

Larisa Alexandra Karassik’s life was tragically cut short on May 23, 2015.  It was Memorial Day weekend, and Larisa, like so many others, was enjoying one of the traditional joys of the holiday weekend: going out for ice cream.  Larisa, together with her best friend, was seated in the back seat of the car being driven by her father, when a speeding truck ran a stop sign and plowed into the side of their car, killing Larisa and seriously injuring her father and friend.  The driver of the truck was drunk and on prescription drugs.  Larisa was only 13 years old at the time of that fatal accident.

In the days, weeks and months following her passing, we came to realize that Larisa was special and extraordinary not just to her family and her friends, but to many others whose lives she touched in her short time here on earth.  Many people have shared with us their memories of Larisa, recalling her generous spirit, boundless energy and acts of kindness towards others.  These stories and remembrances have lifted our spirits and the many kind words of comfort have brought us solace and strength.  We have come to learn that our daughter’s death has had a profound impact on our community.  The love and support of family, friends, neighbors and our community has sustained us and given us the strength to go forward.

We have been humbled by the outpouring of generosity and kindness from our community.

The overwhelming community support has inspired us to continue the circle of giving and assisting others whose lives have been similarly shattered by establishing the Larisa Karassik Foundation, in memory of Larisa.  Our daughter and sister was a brilliant ray of sunshine.  She carried a song in her heart and had faith in the goodness of others. It is our goal to continue Larisa’s legacy by reaching out and helping other families who have similarly lost a beloved child and whose lives have been shattered by drunk and drugged driving.

It is our wish that no parent or family ever experience the tragic loss of a child due to the selfish act of those driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs.



We need to help create awareness, educational programs in our schools and assist other families who have been impacted by similar tragedy.

Let’s work together to stop Drunk & Drugged Driving.

Those of us who are strong and able in the faith need to step in and lend a hand to those who falter, and not just do what   is most convenient for us. Strength is for service, not status. Each one of us needs to look after the good of the people   around us, asking ourselves, “How can I help?”

  Romans 15:1-6

Senator David Carlucci honors Larisa Karassik’s memory in passage of Senate Bill S1721 which relates to the revocation or reissuance of licenses on June 5, 2017

We are forever grateful to Senator David Carlucci and to his  colleagues for passing a new important bill, that will impose stricter penalties for repeats DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) offenders! This new law will help prevent prior offenders from getting back behind the wheel of their vehicles and putting more innocent lives at risk! 

By strengthening the laws and increasing the consequences of repeat DWI offenders, we should see a lower rate of drunk drivers fatalities and accidents. 

The man who killed our beloved 13 year old daughter Larisa, had prior DWI convictions and he did not have a drivers license. He still made the decision to get behind the wheel of a vehicle, after drinking alcohol, with a blood alcohol content of .18 (double the legal limit) and mixed that with prescription narcotics. This man had no right to be driving a vehicle! This fatal car accident was avoidable and took our daughter Larisa's life at the young age of 13. 

Larisa was returning from getting ice cream with her father and best friend at 

5:00 PM on a sunny Memorial Saturday afternoon. Larisa never came home that afternoon with ice cream, she was transported to the morgue in a body bag then to the cemetery. 

Our family has created The Larisa Karassik Foundation, also known as LarisaStrong.org. We are on a mission to continue to educate and create awareness in our middle schools and high schools sharing our story about "Loosing Larisa." We believe that educating our youths will help prevent avoidable fatalities in the future. The foundation's mission is also to assists families and victims, that have been impacted by drunk driving accidents or fatalities.


No more victims! 

No more fatalities! 

No more broken lives and families! 

Thank you to everyone who assisted in passing this bill. We are forever grateful! This is this greatest honor our family could have been given, in memory of our beloved Larisa. 🏻 She is continuing to guide us from above to continue the mission of help save lives! 

They say it akes a village to raise a child, we are the village! TOGETHER WE CAN MAKE A DiFFERENCE! 


The fight to stopping Drunk and Drug Driving is our common goal and our ultimate mission! Together as a community, we can stop these avoidable fatalities.

One person, a complete stranger to p family made several terrible things decisions. The terrible decisions that he made that day, were the last decisions that he willmkooevmer make.

He killed our innocent, 13 year old  daughter Larisa's  💔 as well as loosing hisan ice cream cone🍦 in her hands. The fatalities have taken due to DWI does not discriminate. This could happen to anyone.

Thank you Senator David Carlucci for passing a unanimous new bill S.1720 in memory of Larisa Karassik, to tighten the laws and consequences of repeat DWI Offenders. This is what is keeps us going! Knowing that Larisa's tragic death is helping make change and she will not just become another statistics of another DWI fatality! She is guiding us from above and due to her fatal death, her story will be heard! Changes and awareness are happening. We need to be aware of our children's activities, group of friends and be role models that DWI is completely unacceptable! More changes need to happen, Larisa left us with the mission to continuing this fight and to help save other peoples lives due to this 100% avoidable death. She is saving other lives by hearing our story called "Loosing Larisa."


It takes a village to raise a child, we are the village!!! Thank you MADD, Clarkstown Sheriff's Department, Rockland Stop DWI Program, Leslie  Berger, Scott Cooper and the entire Clarkstown NORTH Girls Soccer ⚽️ team and to everyone who came out to support the 2nd annual "Walk Like Madd" Walk.

We are feeling blessed 🙏🏻.

Ironman Scott Cooper -  Racing for Larisa

Lake Placid, New York on July 22, 2018.

On July 22, 2018, I’ll be competing in the Lake Placid Ironman Triathlon. The Ironman Triathlon is considered by many to be the most challenging one-day sporting event in the world. I will complete a 2.4-mile swim, bike 112 miles and then finish with a 26.2-mile run, which will need to be completed in less than 17 hours. Preparing for a full Ironman is an intensive undertaking; however, I know I will not be alone in this adventure, because I’m racing for Larisa and supporting the Larisa Karassik Foundation.

On May 23, 2015 Memorial Day weekend, an incredible 13-year old student of mine, Larisa Karassik was taken from us, as a result of a DWI fatal car crash. The individual responsible for this tragic accident was driving under the influence of alcohol and prescription narcotics. He was a two-time repeat DWI offender and did not have a current drivers license. Due to this   individuals’ poor decision to drive while under the influence of alcohol and drugs, Larisa’s life “ was taken prematurely.  

Having Larisa as a student can be summed up by describing her as a “once in a life time student”.  It was remarkable to witness her efforts in sports and community service endeavors when she pitched in at a local food pantry, packed food for Ukraine when the country was at war, prepared meals to feed those in need, and filled backpacks with winter clothing and food for the homeless.  She was always an advocate for the underdog! She always helped peers who struggled socially or dealt with bullying.  Her gift of providing hope and making positive marks on those she came in contact with will allow her memory to live on.  The picture above is her attending a field trip with me to Wicked on Broadway. It was an incredible evening spent with classmates. I’ve decided to join the Larisa Strong Foundation to put meaning behind my training miles and race day by making a tangible impact and honoring Larisa’s life.  

As a community, I’m asking you to assist us in honoring Larisa’s life and not let her become just another teen statistic. As a society, we need to do more to ensure that no one becomes the victim of a distracted driving, alcohol or drug related accident.  I’m asking you to join me in making a difference and having Larisa’s legacy live on. Your donation will go to the Larisa Strong Foundation, that provides education funding, inspiration & creating awareness in our community.

In good health,  Scott Cooper

“Wicked”- Broadway Show

Class Trip