Gary

Gary, in his upper 50’s, has developmental disabilities due to Noonan’s Syndrome. After his Dad passed away in 1980, Gary continued to live with his Mom, Shirley. Three and a half years after Gary moved into the Washington House, his mom passed away. It was a difficult time for Gary, but with the love and support of his wonderful family along with his Washington House family, he made it through.

Gary is very pleased to be part of STARS Family Services’ Washington House!  His mom’s wish was that Gary would be able to continue living in the Washington House in the same community where he’s lived for so long.

Since moving into the Washington House, Gary has continued his involvement with STARS at College Church, his work at STARS Resale, and his exercise routine at the Community Center. Gary is our WWII buff! He loves reading books and seeing movies about the war and don’t get him started on WWII airplanes. He knows them all! His favorite vacation was to Hawaii to see Pearl Harbor and take in the WWII sites. Can you guess what his dream for the future is? It’s to go see more WWII battlefields, of course!

Music is very important to Gary and he has a beautiful singing voice. He enjoys singing at STARS and at special events.  Gary has even had the honor of singing the National Anthem at the Run for the STARS! The Beatles’ songs are some of his favorites.  Gary especially likes the song "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" which he can really "belt" out.  Once at a family wedding reception, Gary entertained the whole crowd with his rendition of this favorite!

When you visit the STARS Resale Shop, you may see Gary’s smiling face greeting you at the door or perhaps he’ll be sprucing up the place or using his powerful muscles to help carry your bags. Gary also is a joyful part of a church cleaning team that travels weekly to a nearby church. Gary’ other activities include his job at Easter Seals where he does one of his favorite things; working a big paper shredder! He also enjoys participating in the Connection of Friends day program that meets in a nearby church.

Gary keeps fit by working out at the Wheaton Community center three times a week.  As a child, Gary needed to wear leg braces, but today Gary faithfully exercises his legs, so those braces are long gone!

Gary is passionate about emergency vehicles and especially fire trucks. For fun, Gary enjoys going to the firehouse to see the engines, working puzzles (hard ones!), participating in all STARS activities, and reading about tools of all kinds. Just about everyone is Gary’s friend, but the guys at the Washington House are his special friends.

Gary has attended STARS for over fifteen years and loves singing, playing the chimes, and going on retreats. Along with friends from STARS, Gary and his mom were members of a short-term missions team who traveled to France. That was a memorable event as they served God by sharing Jesus with the people who attended their concerts!  Through STARS, Gary has learned a lot about how to pray and trust in Jesus.