Stony Brook Senior Uses Tech Skills To Purchase, Program Tablets For Families To Speak To Loved Ones With COVID-19

A graduating college senior is turning his loss into an opportunity to help others.

James Rizzardi’s grandmother, Yolanda, died in hospice shortly before the coronavirus pandemic hit.

“I was blessed with the opportunity to be there for her final moments several months ago,” Rizzardi told CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan on Tuesday.

The physics major at Stony Brook University kept in contact with the hospice staff and learned that COVID-19 restrictions sadly meant an abrupt end to in-person visitation at the end of life.

“Going weeks and weeks without hearing them, knowing they’re locked. They’re in quarantine,” Rizzardi said.

So he decided to use his skills to help total strangers.

“I used to repair phones and I have a lot of experience in developing software for Android,” Rizzardi said.

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