Chicago man loses 200 pounds to give back to Little Village

April 4, 2014

By: Meredith Zielke

(Photo courtesy of StoryCorps)
Miguel Blancarte Jr and Shirley Alfaro

Miguel Blancarte, Jr. is a proud resident of Chicago's Little Village neighborhood. A first generation college graduate from Brown University, he now works at a law firm specializing in immigration.

Miguel says the one thing he’s always struggled with is his weight. It wasn’t until his doctor warned him that he wouldn’t live past his mid-40s that he knew something had to change:

“Honestly the thought of losing anything more than 30 pounds was just not a reality to me,” he said.

But Miguel managed to lose not just 30, but 200 pounds in all. He then ran his first ever 5k race to to raise money for Enlace, the local community center that provides health and social services in Little Village.

StoryCorps’ mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to share, record and preserve their stories. This excerpt was edited by WBEZ.

To hear how he lost all that weight so he could give back to his community, check out the audio above.

Meredith Zielke is a WBEZ producer.