Mary is also celebrating her 50th birthday this year, so we thought we’d find out a little more about her life over the past five decades.
Mary was born in London in 1969. She was the first of three children. Her sister Jane was born in 1972 and her brother Thomas in 1975. We had great support from Rex Brinkworth (founder of the DSA) as I was in Birmingham when what was then called ‘The Down’s Baby Society’ was formed.
When Mary was two, we moved to Lamberhurst in Kent where she attended a local nursery school until she was five. At that time, we were told she could not attend the local primary school and so attended a special school 10 miles away.
Meantime we had become very interested and impressed by MacIntyre, a school in Wingrave, Buckingham which was Care For Life. Facilities for school leavers in Kent at that time were very bleak. Eventually Kent agreed to sponsor Mary at MacIntyre and in 1981 she went to school there.
Shortly after that, Mary’s her sister Jane died of leukaemia. Mary does remember her but will not discuss it. However, she remains very close to her brother whom she adores.
As Mary reached adulthood, MacIntyre had extended their services to meet her needs and she moved to an adult community, where she resides to this day along with several of the original pupils who were with her at Wingrave. And so over almost 40 years, she has maintained strong links with many friends.
In Milton Keynes, Mary lives a very independent, full life. She makes many of her own decisions about work and leisure pursuits and her passion over many years has been dancing, for which she has many trophies. She also loves the theatre and attends many trips each year.
Mary has close relationships with several others that live at the service. Her closest friends include Ian, Rosie and Richard.
Mary’s one struggle in life was often around her weight, but over the last few years she has been supported by both staff at MacIntyre and Slimming World and has lost an amazing six stone! She is an inspiration to all of us.
Mary has just celebrated her 50th birthday! She had a party with all of her friends and also enjoyed going to spa overnight.
Throughout 2020, we will be celebrating our 50th anniversary by hearing from people over 50 and their families, learning about their life and memories over the past 50 years. So stay tuned and follow us on social media to get updated when a new story is available.
We’d love to hear your story – find out how you can be a part of our celebrations here.