Winnetka marathoner dedicates run to nephew
Stephani Figlioli is running the Chicago Marathon to raise money for the PACTT Learning Center, where her nephew, Vincent Figlioli, 10, lives and goes to school. PACTT stands for Parents Allied with Children and Teachers for Tomorrow. | Provided
How to donate
Donations to PACTT will be accepted at pactt.org or by mail to the PACTT Development Office, 712 Belleforte Ave., Oak Park, IL 60302.
Updated: October 4, 2012 3:42PM
WINNETKA Stephanie Figlioli will be full of emotion when she runs Sunday’s Chicago Marathon, the final marathon of her running career.
Her father, Steve Butler, was diagnosed in 2010 with lung cancer and had been given four to nine months to live. He fought for 21 months, passing away in July. Stephanie, of Winnetka, last ran the marathon on Oct. 10, 2010, two days after her father received the news.
“They say running is 75 percent training and 25 percent heart,” she said. “I ran it but my heart was broken.”
Not satisfied with her last effort, Stephanie will run the Chicago Marathon again, only this time she will be raising money for an organization that now has a special meaning to her family.
Stephanie’s nephew, Vincent Figlioli, suffers from severe autism. The condition greatly affects Vincent’s ability to communicate and express his needs and feelings.
Six months ago, Vincent’s parents, Heather and David, made the difficult decision to enroll their son at the Parents Allied with Children and Teachers for Tomorrow Learning Center. After researching PACTT, Heather decided it was best to send her 10-year-old son to live at the center.
“He’s so severe that we weren’t able to maintain him in our home,” Heather said. “We really needed that support, and were thrilled when they had an opening.”
Vincent comes home every weekend and receives visits often, but he spends five days a week living in the Elmwood Park group home and attends classes with his peers at the PACTT Learning Center in Rogers Park.
PACTT has two children’s homes, two adult homes and will house 27 residents at the end of the year. The organization provides a learning center, transition programs, housing, therapy and other services for children and adults with autism.
Realizing her sister-in-law would be running her final marathon, Heather had one request of Stephanie.
“I asked Stephanie if she would be interested in dedicating her race to Vincent and the organization,” Heather said. “I wasn’t surprised when she said yes. She’s an incredible, generous, giving and loving person.”
The money Stephanie raises will be donated to the PACTT Learning Center, which is a not-for-profit organization.
“I felt like if I’m going to do it again I want to give it my best shot,” Stephanie said. “It’s great Vincent has this wonderful place where he’s thriving. Just to see him happy is my gift to him.”