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Sharon, Pittsburgh, PAStars

Mom of Luke, age 25

me and lukeWhen my son was diagnosed with childhood apraxia of speech over two decades ago now, I felt lost. Actually, I was shocked. It truly threw me for a loop to come to the realization after his diagnosis that my son’s path to speech and full communication – to finding his voice – would be a very, very long road.

That road was made much brighter by several things. The first was my son’s speech-language pathologist Dave Hammer. Talk about a candle in the darkness! That was and is Dave. Such an exceptional, artful professional and human being. Second, was my family. The love and support of a little boy, his parents and siblings is a precious gift that is never forgotten.

Next, as I started CASANA with the hope of assuring that other parents, dads and other moms like me, would not have to travel alone, there came some real stars. Special moms like Kathy Hennessy and Mary Sturm who joined that first Board of Directors were carrying lanterns to help light the way. Of course, all of CASANA’s board of director’s over the years and then the CASANA staff that arrived – my goodness, things began to actual glow!

Brightening the journey even more were countless volunteers, many special mothers of children with apraxia. Seeing them link arm to arm and commit to our apraxia mission, they are lighting the way. Today, what started as a private, lonely trek for me has evolved into a vibrant community.

The son I worried about so much is now a wonderful, expressive, talented young adult who has made me proud at every point of this journey. When I look at him now, after everything he has experienced, I realize he is my beacon, he always was. Apraxia Awareness Day is our chance to share the beautiful light of our children and our community of support. Thank you for joining us!

Apraxia Awareness Day 2