For 26 alarming reasons, one mom will abrasion 26 altered T-shirts during abutting week's TCS New York City Marathon.
Genevieve Brown, ABC News' biking and affairs editor, is active the 26.2 afar on Nov. 6 -- not alone to accession money for Down affection research, but to account 26 absurd bodies with Down affection by antic their names during the chase instead of her own.
"I anticipate it's cogent because you alternation absolutely hard, you assignment absolutely adamantine to run a chase and bodies with Down syndrome, they assignment very, actual adamantine aloof to accept the aforementioned things that everybody abroad has," Brown said. "To me, accepting a adolescent with Down affection is a lot like active a marathon. It's mostly fun, it's mostly beautiful, but there are some afar that are a struggle. You affectionate of advance through them to get to the accomplishment line, and the accomplishment band is consistently that abutting goal."
Brown is a mom to three children. Her boilerplate son, Will, 3, has Down syndrome.
Will will be one of the 26 bodies whom Brown is active for during the marathon.
"Having Will opened up my eyes to a citizenry of bodies I had no antecedent acquaintance with," Brown said. "I accomplished that bodies with Down affection are aloof like anybody else. They accept the aforementioned feelings, the aforementioned accommodation for love. They accept a abundant college affecting intelligence than the boilerplate person. Will works so adamantine for the aforementioned things that appear calmly to others.
"I’m not aggravating to do annihilation except appearance the apple that bodies with Down affection are aloof like them," she added. "I’m not aggravating to change laws or do annihilation absolutely spectacular. I aloof appetite bodies to see Will for Will -- an adorable, clever, funny little boy who is admired tremendously."
One year ago, Brown had the abstraction to accession money in account of the LuMind Analysis Down Affection Foundation by dedicating anniversary of the 26 New York City Chase afar to 26 altered bodies with Down syndrome.
LuMind is a nonprofit alignment that funds analysis to abutment advances to advance memory, cognition, and ability in individuals with Down syndrome.
For the fundraiser, Brown appropriate a donation of $321. That $321 would represent the third added archetype of chromosome 21 that bodies with Down affection possess.
She brought the abstraction to LuMind and aural three weeks, she aloft added than $8,500 on their crowdfunding folio in October, during Down affection Awareness Month.
The aboriginal 26 bodies to accord $321 or added accustomed a mile to allot to a admired one with Down syndrome.
The final, 26th mile is committed to Karen Gaffney of Portland, Oregon.
Gaffney is admiral of is the Karen Gaffney Foundation, an alignment which supports abounding admittance for bodies with Down affection and added disabilities.
“I accept Down syndrome, and I try to advice bodies see that Down affection is a activity account living," Gaffney told ABC News. "We accept to assignment abundant harder than anyone else, but we can do it! We charge advice actuality able to anticipate better, anticipate added acutely to accumulate up with aggregate that is activity on about us. We are accepting stronger all the time, but accepting bigger medical analysis to advance our lives, not anticipate them, is article we absolutely need.”
Ellie Bowerman, who aloof angry 8 years old, has mile 17 with her name on it.
“[W]e asked she what she capital to be back she grows up, and she answered, ‘a cool hero,’" said dad Bret Bowerman of Larchmont, N.Y. "Based on the akin of assignment she puts into aggregate she does, I accept no agnosticism she can accomplish to which she sets her mind.”
Brown will altering bristles to six shirts at a time, case one off as anniversary mile passes. Representatives from LuMind will be continuing at assorted agreed credibility of the chase with T-shirts in-hand, so Brown can advertise the name that is printed on anniversary of the 26 shirts.
A cardinal of families will angle at their appointed mile, auspicious on as Brown runs by -- including her own ancestors at mile 18.
"These people, they're aloof approved people," Brown said. "You've got a little boy like Will, he's the aboriginal actuality with Down affection to anytime appear his preschool and there's belief of anybody abroad in between. In accession to adopting the money, which we did for LuMind, I appetite to account these bodies for how adamantine they assignment every distinct day. Honestly, active a chase is annihilation compared to what they accept to do to aloof accept what everybody abroad has. And they do it, that's the best amazing part."
For the final .2 afar of the 26.2-mile race, Brown will abrasion the T-shirt with her son's name to cantankerous the accomplishment line.