A Smile and a Wave

It was Spence who first brought him to my attention, less than a mile from my home, as you round the bend coming into our little downtown.  Spence honked and waved.

“Who are you waving at?” I asked.

“My buddy” he answered.  But we’d already driven past.

I started paying attention.  A young man with Down’s Syndrome, in his twenties if I had to guess, sitting in front of his house and waving to passing drivers. I started waving back whenever I saw him.  Always cheerful, consistently enthusiastic, he brightens my day as I imagine he does for others. He’s like our small town’s ambassador. In the bitter cold of winter, his time outside was curtailed but I’d still look.

Just a few days ago, Spence and I were driving into town.

“Oh no” he remarked “He’s in a wheelchair”.  Not knowing the nature of his health, we both feared what that meant.

Quite by chance, I saw a post on Facebook a few hours later.  It introduced Dustin and talked of his joy in waving to friends, how he loved making people happy.  Dustin recently had surgery that confined him to a wheelchair during a three month recovery.  And until recently, kept him housebound.  That is when some good citizens came forward and built a ramp for him.  Just heard there was a need and stepped up in a single weekend to return a kindness.  Dustin had impacted them with his unbridled friendliness and in turn, made new friends.

Happy to know that the wheelchair is only temporary we now had a name and a glimpse into this endearing young man’s life.

A smile and a wave can make a difference.


Writing 101 assignment for today was to share a character study of someone we’d met who’d impacted our lives within the last year.  

7 thoughts on “A Smile and a Wave

  1. I would suggest that it would make the sentence best if it read like this. “my buddy”he replied ____(adjective). But we had already driven pass.
    Hope this helps.
    Luisa f.

  2. It’s a lovely story, and well written. I could feel the characters in each scene. Well done. I’m happy to hear of what people did to help him. Beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thank you for your kind words. I’ve lived in this town my whole life and it touched me to learn more about my neighbors. Goodness and kindness abound. 😊

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