Mineola girls to be featured in Down Syndrome Society’s NYC Buddy Walk

Mineola girls to be featured in Down Syndrome Society’s NYC Buddy Walk
Hannah, left, and Sarah Tracy, right will be featured in the NDSS video presentation in Times Square on Saturday, Sept. 9. (Photo courtesy of Stacey Tyson-Tracy)

Two children from Mineola will be featured in a video presentation in Times Square on Saturday, Sept. 9, as part of the National Down Syndrome Society’s Buddy Walk. 

Pictures of Sarah, 4, and Hannah Tracy, 2, will be featured in a one-hour video of about 500 photographs of children, teenagers, and adults with Down Syndrome from all 50 states. 

“It’s a really cool opportunity for families that are in similar circumstances and similar situations to come together,” said Stacey Tyson-Tracy, Sarah and Hannah’s mother. 

Down Syndrome is a genetic disorder caused when abnormal cell division results in extra genetic material from chromosome 21. Humans are typically born with 23 pairs of chromosomes, and people who have Down Syndrome have an extra copy of chromosome 21.

Down Syndrome causes a distinct facial appearance, developmental delays and intellectual disability, among other things.

The NDSS video presentation will run from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday morning in Times Square before participants head to Central Park for the New York City Buddy Walk and celebration from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Since 1995 the NDSS has held the buddy walk, attracting participants from across the country. This year the walk will take place at the Naumburg Bandshell on Terrace Drive in Central Park. 

Tyson-Tracey, who has five children, said this is the first year the girls’ pictures were selected after she previously submitted pictures of Sarah when she was born and the first time she had submitted a picture of both girls after Hannah, who turns 3 on Sept. 12, was born.

“There are a few families from their school [Association for Children with Down Syndrome, Inc.] and some of them have been selected to participate this year,” Tyson-Tracey said. “The momentum and enthusiasm everyone has together over this, it’s very cool.”

NDSS is one of the few organizations Tyson-Tracy is a part of, the first being Brittany’s Baskets of Hope in Lake Grove which came to her family’s house when Sarah was born. The group makes and delivers baskets to families that are expecting or have newly welcomed a baby with Down Syndrome that feature information and guidance to celebrate their arrival. 

“We’re just excited about the positive message that comes out of this concept of bringing people, siblings and family members with Down Syndrome together,” Tyson-Tracy said. 

My information on the Sept. 9 event can be found online at the NDSS website.

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