CSI: NY star Carmine Giovinazzo has offered his support to Save Ellis Island, an organization geared towards restoring “the great national landmark and irreplaceable American icon,” which served as an entry point to over 12 million people from around the world.  The organization’s campaign, “We Are Ellis Island,” features celebrities like Giovinazzo and ordinary citizens sharing stories of how Ellis Island is part of their respective family histories.

“My grandfather spoke Italian,” Carmine Giovinazzo said as he shared his story through the “We Are Ellis Island” website.  “He came over from Naples.  The boat that he took left Naples [in] 1923.  He arrived here in May, just two years after my grandfather from Oslo, Norway arrived here in May of 1921.”  Giovinazzo’s grandmother also entered the United States through Ellis Island when she was only seven years old.

Born and raised in Staten Island, Carmine Giovanizzo, who plays Detective Danny Messer on CSI: NY, is very proud of his roots, saying that being a second-generation American is “pretty amazing.”  He also said that visiting Ellis Island for the first time was a “really emotional” experience, adding that their family’s history is very important to his mother.  He also walked through Ellis Island’s old buildings, which are now in poor condition, and said that he could “really feel the spirit of it.”

Aside from the CSI: NY star, other celebrities who have signed up for the cause include Elliot Gould (Friends), Katharine McPhee (American Idol), Steve Schirripa (The Sopranos), Christian Slater (My Name is Earl), John Ventimiglia (The Sopranos), Kristin Cavallari (Veronica Mars) and Richard Belzer (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit).

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Save Ellis Island is a non-profit organization that aims to restore more of the buildings on the island and preserve them, giving future generations the opportunity to visit the historical area.  The main building on the island currently serves as a museum.

For more information about Save Ellis Island, to view videos, or to donate to the cause, log on to www.weareellisland.org.

-Lisa Claustro, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
Source: We Are Ellis Island Website, CSI Files
(Image Courtesy of We Are Ellis Island)