Russo makes history, wins state championship

April 15, 2010
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For the Dello Russo family, even a trip to Revere Beach can turn into an engaging marine biology discussion.

So, it was no surprise when their son, John Jr., took his History Fair project to a new level of achievement – that being the State Champion level. He’s the first middle school student in Revere to ever take home the state champion honors for the very popular History Fair.

“Before my husband worked in medical research, he was a marine biologist,” said Patty Dello Russo. “We would spend a lot of time at Revere Beach or at the lakes in Maine. And our family outings usually turn into a learning experience. John Jr. and his brothers have grown up with this and it is second nature to them.”

John Dello Russo Jr. is an 8th grader at the Rumney Marsh Academy and his award-winning project was on the historic innovation of anesthesia. It was titled ‘Anesthesia: Soothing the Pain.’ Officially, Dello Russo won the Jr. Division of the Individual Documentary competition.

His mother, Patty, and father, John Sr., said that while doing research on peanut allergies (which John Jr. suffers from), their son happened upon the story of the invention of anesthesia.

From there, he made a documentary movie on their home computer, doing a lot of legwork and study.

“He worked really hard on it and went into Mass General and did all his interviews in there,” said Patty. “He even got pictures directly inside the Ether Dome [operating room] at Mass General.”

Now, Dello Russo is off to Washington, D.C. on June 13-17 for the national History Fair competition. The event will take place at the University of Maryland.

Despite his newfound history credentials, Dello Russo’s mother said he is more interested in science and research. He even won Third Place at the State Middle School Science Fair last year.

“He does like history, but he’s really into science,” said Patty. “He wants to be involved with science or biology. I think what he’s thinking about is doing research. He really loves animals and nature.”

The family lives on Cushman Avenue and John Sr. and Patty both work at the Mass General’s Dermatology Research Lab at the Charlestown Navy Yard.

His two younger brothers are Joe, a sixth-grader at RMA, and Michael, a fifth-grader at the Lincoln School.

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