Recognizing the abilities of those with Down Syndrome

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October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month and D and S Community Services in Morehead says it is a good time to let people know about the abilities of those with Down Syndrome.

Staff at D and S Community Services works with Robbie McTush on a daily basis. He likes cooking, reading and loves music. He works at Morehead State University for the public radio station. McTush says some of his duties are organizing cds and helping with reports. McTush also says he has a girlfriend, Dawn. “She likes what I like,” says McTush.

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McTush says he also likes cooking and staff at D and S say they find recipes he would like to try and takes him shopping for ingredients. Workers at D and S Community Services say he makes some impressive dishes, and they help him prepare certain parts of the recipe.

McTush says he is close to Colby Thatcher, the program director at D and S. “We really just hit it off. Robbie went to high school with my husband, and they hit it off even more after they were reconnected,” says Thatcher. “Robbie stays with us every once in a while in our home. He is part of our family. Robbie has a good heart. He is one of the kindest, most gentle people that I honestly know.”

Thatcher added that McTush will enjoy a longer life than if he had been born in the 1980s. “Since 1983, the life expectancy for someone with down syndrome has jumped from 25 to between 60 and 65 years old,” says Thatcher.

The business also says people should stop thinking of those with diseases as disabled. “Any disability that someone has, some people kind of look at it and say I’m not going to talk to that person. I’m going to shy away because it is unknown. They’re afraid of what they don’t know,” says Bethany France, CLS Coordinator for D and S Community Services. “But knowing these people, getting an attachment with these people is such a blessing.”

If you would like to read, work on art projects or volunteer in another way, D and S Community Services says you can call them at (606) 783-0515 or come in to its office at 259R Old Flemingsburg Road.