During part of our Florida Panhandle Tour last month, we met Beth and Patrick Stanley in Defuniak Springs, Florida. This is a mom and her 31-year-old son. Patrick has Down Syndrome and still lives at home. Beth is a nurse and a former board member of the National Down Syndrome Congress. She has been a strong lobbyist for making mainstream education as user-friendly for Down Syndrome youth as possible. This is multi-pronged. That is, whether advocating for teachers to be more inclusive curriculum-wise for these students. Or pushing for teachers to better facilitating peer support for these students. Beth has also been quite vocal about equity around state financial help for Down Syndrome kids… When pointing to success stories of Down Syndrome people, Patrick’s is a classic case. As with many Down Syndrome youth, Patrick had a variety of physical complications (extensive asthma, all kinds of orthopedic problems…) growing up. After one surgery, they had to put Patrick in a full body cast. In trying to find things to occupy Patrick during this time, Beth got him some sketch paper and drawing paper. He started to doodle. But quickly, the doodles turned into drawings, turned into good drawings. Patrick, they discovered, was an artist. As time went on, Patrick showed in contests, had his art displayed in various places around the area, and has recently come out with a line of greeting cards with his drawings. Some of the proceeds from these cards goes to a public awareness video project about Down Syndrome titled: Pursuit of Happiness… Quality of Life. The rest of the proceeds go to the National Down syndrome Congress in Atlanta, Georgia. Note: Our family spent the last week doing more work (weeding, putting up hay, working with the animals…) around a farm in western Ohio. The kids really take to this kind of life. During a tour several years ago, I told Country Today newspaper in Wisconsin that one of our biggest laments is the tremendous decline of the small family farm, which used to be the backbone of our country. Note 2: *We are trying to raise donations for the next phase of the campaign. If you can help, please send your check to: Schriner Presidential Election Committee, 14304 Mangen Rd., Yorkshire, Ohio 45388-9715. Thank you.