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My maternal grandmother, Christine Sears, gave birth to a baby boy on February 8, 1938. That boy, my uncle Jerry, was born with Down Syndrome. In my opinion, the single greatest thing my grandmother ever did was to keep him. Rather than giving her baby to the state or placing him in an institution, Christine …

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I lived in the run down old mansion on Capitol Hill on two occasions: the first time for a period of about seven months from June – December of 1988 and again from March of 1990 until June of 1993. In between I spent six months living in Washington DC during which I applied to …