The National Advocate for People with Down Syndrome Since 1979

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My Uncle Daniel
A lovely picture of my Uncle Daniel
A lovely picture of my Uncle Daniel
My Uncle Daniel

Growing up I was never told what Down syndrome was. In fact, I probably didn’t grasp the concept until I reached my teen years. When I was ten years old, I overheard a conversation my sister was having. She needed help on an essay she was doing about my Uncle Danny. This confused me a little. Why did she pick Uncle Danny for this essay? That’s when she explained Down syndrome to me, and told me that Uncle Danny was born with it. Even after learning more and more about his special needs, he was still just my Uncle Danny, not my Uncle Danny with Down syndrome! He is the most loving, caring, genuine person I’ll ever know. He’ll wait for my siblings or me to get off the bus, color pictures for my family, and - although he may show us the same magazine with the same pictures that he likes everyday - he only does it because he believes it’s important to us. Although I am still young, I have to say that living with him my whole life has made me a better person. He taught me how to accept, be patient with and understand everyone. He even inspired me to take part in after school activities with the special education students in my school. My uncle was born on April 25, 1960. He was brought up with my father, my grandmother and my grandfather, and his six other brothers and sisters! He went to a school with other students in special education who learned the basic skills people would need outside of school such as cleaning, cooking and working. (If there is something my uncle loves, it’s school!) He loved being there, and loves telling me about it! Not only is my uncle one of a kind, but my parents are also! They are such an important part in his life. When my uncle graduated school and started working, his father unfortunately passed away. My father, at just eighteen years old, decided to take on the care of my uncle along with my grandmother. During the years that my Uncle went to school, the teachers and other mentors would tell my family that my Uncle Danny wouldn’t have many skills, and not to bother trying to help him write his name, tie his shoes, or count. That’s just another reason why my uncle amazes me. If I were to ask him to write his name, tie his shoes and to count, he sure will. My uncle, who is now fifty-three years old, is a great person and has inspired me to contribute to as much as I can to special education. In 1990, My mother and father were married in 1990 and my grandmother - my father and uncle's mother - passed away in 2011. During that time and ever since, my parents have been excellent people in doing the best for Uncle Danny. My uncle has given us all the inspiration and love in return.




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Liz, United States, PA
1/19/2014 12:59:03 PM
Brittany, Such a heartfelt story about " Uncle Danny". I had to stop reading it a few times to wipe the tears from my eyes. As Danny does on a daily basis, your story too will reach others. An inspiration for all!

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