Cystic Fibrosis Fundraiser

Taken From the Valley Gazzette, 2005

Marcucio, a Derby resident and single mother, got the idea to start a cystic fibrosis walk three years ago when she owned Elaine’s Cup and Saucer on Derby Ave.  She now owns a homemaking service for elderly people called EAC Healthcare.

Colby sees a doctor once every three months for a checkup.  Marcucio tries to help her son keep a positive attitude about his illness.

Colby, however, is aware of his condition.  He takes enzyme pills to help digest his food and wears a vest twice daily that inflates and deflates rapidly in an effort to clear mucus from his lungs.

Marcuciou is raising money to make life better for her son and other people with cystic fibrosis.  The condition affects 30,000 children and adults in the United States.  Of all genetic diseases, it is the number one killer of children and young adults, according to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

A child must inherit two defective genes – one from each parent – to be born with Cystic Fibrosis.  As many as 10 million Americans are symptom-less carriers of the gene, according to the foundation.

Marcucio and her ex-husband are symptom-less carriers, she said.

Cystic Fibrosis has a variety of symptoms, including persistent coughing; pneumonia; excessive appetite and poor weight.  Colby, according to Marcucio, has been able to stay in good health most of the time.

Prior to 2001, there was no Cystic Fibrosis Walk in the Valley area.  Marcucio said she first went to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to ask if she could host a walk here.

She received support and assistance from LuAnn LeClerc, director of special events for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.  “I’m just trying to get the word out and hopefully get some volunteers to help,” Marcucio said.

Lecleac said the best part of her job is helping people like Marcucio.

“She takes charge of the situation and runs with it,” Lecleac said.  “Elaine’s situation is neat because her friends and her get together to do what they have to do.”

A Little Help From Her Friends

Marcucio credits friends and associates with helping to make the events a success. 

One of them is Nicholas Behun, Ansonia’s building inspector and a teacher at Derby High School.

Behun had students in his carpentry class create four four-by-four signs advertising the event.

“I try to teach kids that sometimes along the way you have to give back,” Behun said. “It gives the kids a sense of community.”

Marcucio credits Darren Toth, Anthony DeFala and James Garofalo for helping create the game dinner that will take place on February 7 at St. Sebastian’s hall. 

The dinner will feature venison child, wild game meatballs and venison sausage.  The evening will also include a raffle. 

Toth and his hunting buddies, DeFala and Garofalo, came up with the idea of a game dinner, which attracted 200 people and made $5,600 last year.  All three friends got to know Marcucio and Colby as patrons at her old shop.

Toth’s friends, Garofalo, a Derby police officer and cousin of Derby Mayor Mary Garofalo, said, the group who will prepare the game dinner all used to meet for lunch at Elaine’s Cup and Saucer.

“It helps keep us all together,” Garfalo said, “And it’s good to help out.”

“It’s such a good cause,” Toth said.  “The more money we collect, the quicker we’ll find a cure.”

For information or for tickets to the Feb 7 dinner, call Marcucio at 887-5047 or 734-0860.