Andy’s Bio

Andy has been a student at Noorthoek Academy for 23 years.  He is proud to have received an honorary degree from Grand Rapids Community College in 2021. Andy enjoys his job in Grand Rapids. A fun fact about Andy is that he used to raise and show llamas.

Andy’s Poetry

Special...not Needy

Family makes my life beautiful
I was born with Down Syndrome.
My parents were dedicated
to my special needs
making sure that I was always challenged.

I have been given many opportunities.
Special Olympics helped me develop
physical and mental strength.
My pet llama taught me responsibility.
I am a dedicated worker at my job
of 14 years.

Sometimes I feel sad about things.
I want to get a drivers license
and drive a car.
I don’t let this get in my way.
I feel special…not needy.
I am glad I was born.

Endless Place

Bottomless ocean.
Deep, dark, and unexplored.
It is a place of boundless,
and endless space.
Pitch black.

I Am Andy

My sense of humor
keeps my spirit light.
My ability to read and
comprehend is
very special because
I have Down’s Syndrome.
My belief in God helps me
be tolerant and kind.
My strong political opinions
keep me grounded.
My love for travel
and social situations
opens my world.
My love of sports
keeps me active.
I am well-rounded.
I am Andy.

A Good Sport

Practicing my accuracy,
learning to call plays.
Working hard to
perfect my skills.
Standing on the mound,
sending a pitch through the zone.
Cheering on my teammates
regardless if we win or lose.
2013 Area 11 Athlete of the Year.
Proving that it’s not just talent
that makes a good athlete.

Superwomen I Have Known

My mom who, as a nurse,
cared for the sick all-day
then came home
to take care of me.
My school teachers who taught me
and had so much patience
with special needs kids.
My grandma and aunts who
loved me and made me feel
so lucky to have them in my life.

Simply Kind

To be gentle with a good nature,
generous and unselfish.
To comfort those suffering losses,
and perform quiet acts of kindness.
To visit rescue shelters and
soothe frightened animals.
To be kind is as simple
as being aware of others.