In 2014 The Sara Percival-Valenti Memorial Scholarship Fund was established in honor of our beautiful friend Sara, and other classmates who left us too soon. Each year members of the Cicero High School Class of ’83, along with friends and family, come together to raise money allowing us to offer scholarship awards to eligible CNS High School students via Dollars-for-Scholars.
Each year the The Sara Percival-Valenti Memorial Scholarship Fund raises money for both students pursuing a degree in Occupational Therapy, like Sara, as well as other fields as they continue their college education. Through our fundraising efforts, we are helping young adults get an education that will enable them to “Power Through” to the next stage of their lives!
Our last fundraising efforts in March, 2014 enabled us to provide four scholarship awards to the C-NS graduation class of 2014, exceeding our initial goal of two scholarships! This year, we look forward to our upcoming Golf Tournament Fundraiser at Northern Pines in Cicero to be held on August 1st.
Our hope is to continue to raise money in Sara’s name, and with the help of donations from supporters, we will successfully see young adults from our hometown further their education and live life to the fullest, like Sara always did!
by Danny Percival
May 17th 1965 – that was the day the Percival family received a new addition – Sara Dean – and for me it was love at first sight – in the 48 years since that day she has been known by many names, Sara, Scooter, Scoot, Mom, Aunt Sara & The Chosen One. Let me explain the last one, this is an affectionate name (sometimes) that Doug and I called Sara from time to time and this past 4th of July we witnessed the great humorous side of our sister. For years every 4th Scoot, Doug & I have a ritual of going to town by boat after the fireworks to see old friends from our summers at the lake. Well, this year for some reason our parents didn’t think it was a good idea and we were like “Really?” After some discussion between the three of us, out of the blue, Sara said “Let me talk to them, after all I am the chosen one.” So while we were on our way to town that night by boat we all had a good laugh. You see this is the Sara I know and love, never too full of herself, but cherishing the little things in life. Even though her life was cut short, Sara would not want us to feel sorry for her because that was not part of her makeup, and this is evident in the way she lived her life to the fullest each and every day, even up to the very end. One night I was talking with Sandy Valenti and she was telling me about when she would take Sara to treatments and they would talk, not about why me or this isn’t fair, but about what projects and tasks she had to do in the coming days. Sandy then used a phrase that hit me like a ton of bricks because it described Sara to a T, Sandy said “Dan it was amazing. Sara just powered through the treatments.” This was evident. When I asked Sara one time how it was going, she said and I quote “Danny, I can handle the treatments but they are a pain in the ass because they interfere with my plans”… she powered through it. This past summer we celebrated our parents 50th anniversary in Long Lake. The date was right after one of her treatments and the doctor was against it, but she negotiated using the argument “But I have the dinner.” As bad as she felt…she came…she powered through it. Even in her last months she went to Colorado to visit her daughter Nicki. She got all three kids off to college, did eight hour shifts at work, and arranged treatments so she could enjoy her weekends with her friends……she powered through it. In the last week that Sara was with us, even though she was not feeling well, she still went to see her daughter, Jessie, play soccer and see her son, Eric, not once but twice in 5 days, she powered through it. (more…)