Written by his mother Grace.
My son Christopher turned 50 in February 2020. He was born in Calgary Alberta in Canada, and the doctor said that he had a blocked large intestine and was in need of an experimental operation within 24 hours, and if he recovered from it well, he would be a little bit slow.
The whole family moved back to Toronto after Christopher came out of hospital in Calgary in order to have a proper chromosome test, and the result confirmed that he had Down’s syndrome. Christopher was never able to speak nor suck, so we spoon fed him from being a baby until he was four years old.
Christopher has always been a very, very tidy person. He never dropped rice on the floor or table. He also learnt how to use chopsticks as well as knives and forks.
Christopher is also a very strong person. He copied his dad on how to drive a car and he actually drove our car at the age of three years old on the driveway! He learnt how to swim in Florida and has always been a very good swimmer.
The entire family moved back to England when Christopher was aged nine. He then stayed with the Reynolds family as foster parents in the Midlands for 29 years. During that time, he accomplished a Paralympic bronze medal for swimming aged 16.
The following year, BOAC (British Overseas Airways Corporation) had a drawing competition for all children under 18. One of Christopher’s drawing was shown and he was awarded a one day flight on Concord in 1987! He continue to do a lot of craft and sell to the public as well as learn Makaton. He taught Makaton to high-school students when his eyesight was still very good.
Christopher moved back down to Devon 11 years ago to a supported living home. His eyesight is deteriorating quite badly, and he is completely blind now. Two valves in his heart were blocked too, so he had two stents put in.
Christopher lost his father three years ago and again, he had to move to another home. He misses his dad so much but he can’t express it. Now he is in another supported living home but just with one other lady sharing a house.
Christopher recently enjoyed a party for his 50th birthday with family.