Founder - Marylouise "Duck" White-Petteruti
The unique and innovative program that is the heart and soul of Domus Pacis Family Respite is the loving creation of our founder, Duck White-Petteruti.
The genesis for the respite program was a “girl trip to the mountains” that Duck planned and put into place with her ailing mother and two sisters. Duck’s mother, living with lung cancer, wanted to visit her "dirt", the site of the home that Duck and her husband Vince were planning to eventually build in Summit County.
What occurred that week was, to say the least, transformative. Duck’s mother had a week to completely forget about her illness and bask in the glory of the mountains. At the same time, Duck and her sisters had a week to laugh and cry – to reconnect with each other, as well as to prepare themselves for the rough times still ahead.
The day Duck’s mother passed, she still had the pictures of that special week with her daughters by her side.
This profound experience instilled in Duck the power of the mountains and the need for cancer patients to get away for some time with their families - time to escape and briefly forget about all the medical stuff. A time to relax, enjoy and create memories together.
Ten years later, Duck’s “dirt” had turned into a home built to be the original “house of peace” and Domus Pacis Family Respite was born.
Since then, Domus Pacis, created in the memory and spirit of Duck’s “no regrets” girl trip has served more than 1,500 families, providing thousands with the opportunity to have their own healing week in the mountains.