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MaryGrace Patterson

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Wayne, A True Story Of A Handicaped Child
By MaryGrace Patterson
Friday, April 03, 2009

Rated "G" by the Author.

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Wayne was a physically and emotionally challenged boy I knew when I was a little girl.

I grew up in St Johnsbury,VT. on a place called the "Hill". It was a plateau with four surrounding embankments. A narrow winding road wove its way up around corners,
providing a way for vehicles to get to the top.
There were about twelve homes built on it. A steep path offered a way to walk ,if one wished to do so.

Our house was built into a dirt bank.
When one entered they walked onto the porch. The kitchen,dining,living room and parlor were on the first floor. Two bedrooms,a bath,cellar and furnace room were down stairs. About twenty feet seperated our house from the edge of a steep bank.
The Sleeper River lay at the bottom and wound its way through St Johnsbury,before eventually joining the Connecuit River.

Our next door neighbors were the Tillitsons. Their house was also built into the bank. A large high wooden fence seperated our homes.
One day when I was outside playing, I heard squeals of laughter coming from the yard next door. I peeked around the corner and saw a boy twelve or thirteen chasing a yellow butterfly.
I ran around the fence and introduced my self. He stopped running abruptly and stared at me. He looked and acted differently from other kids I knew. He talked in short halting sentences in a baby like way. Then he started lumbering after the elusive butterfly again. I laughed as I raced around the yard with him.

His mother, Olive came out and introduced me to," Wayne". She said he had come to stay with them and lived in southern Vermont in a special home for children.

I liked Wyane immeadiately . We had a grand time playing together that week.
His child like ways were simple and he delighted in the smallest things that occured. He had a bad temper tho and got upset easily.

My mother told me Wayne was a Mongoloid child who had a lot of emotional and learning problems.
The group home he lived in, specialized in caring for chlidren who were mentally challenged.

I always felt compassion towards Wayne and tried to be patient and understanding when we played together. Some times that was hard for a little girl of nine. He never stayed very long when he visited. I could see sadness in his parents eyes as they lovingly cared for their son.

Wayne died in his early twenties. I have never forgotten the young man who remained a little boy forever.


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Reviewed by randy smith 4/27/2009
Mary, I'll bet Wayne never forgot the little girl that took the time to play with him! That showed him compasssion. Good job, and wonderful story!
Reviewed by Karen Vanderlaan 4/3/2009
such a lovely, sweet story
Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 4/3/2009
Beautiful story of acceptance in its purest form: children can be our greatest teachers! Wayne lives on in compelling lines; well done, MG!

(((HUGS))), much love, and continued prayers~

As always, your friend in Tx., Karen Lynn. :D
Reviewed by Rose Rideout 4/3/2009
Wayne was a special boy who was sent to share his love in a very special way to a very special person, You. Thank you for sharing as he will always live in your heart MaryGrace.

Newfie Hugs, Rose

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