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Fishing for all


“You should’ve seen your face when Cooper was reeling in that grouper,” My long-time friend Tony DiGiulian. “You were so happy. That smile was priceless.”

While my wife was expecting, my son Cooper, age 9, was diagnosed as having Trisomy 21 or Down Syndrome. After the diagnosis, I spent weeks worrying and Googling. My mind was filled with worries. Cooper would be able to accomplish everything that Max does. He would be healthy. Will he need round-the-clock attention? And while it wasn’t my biggest concern, I wondered if Cooper would ever go fishing with me.

The writer’s son Cooper helps him reel in a large grouper. 

Anthony DiGiulian

Through our research we discovered the Down Syndrome Association of Central Florida. This organization provided support, eased our concerns and introduced us other families from our area. The DADS group (Dads recognizing Down Syndrome) changed my entire life. Through DADS, I’ve formed close friendships and found a sounding board to discuss all of the issues a parent with a special-needs child must tackle. Topics that aren’t easy to speak about. This group of guys ,…

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