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Verdes celebrates their victory on Sunday with special fan Hector ‘Moo’ Santos, one day ahead of World Down Syndrome Day

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Posted: Monday, March 21, 2022. 1:40 pm CST.

Photo Credit: Verdes FC

By Rubén Morales Iglesias:

The best way to gain awareness for a cause is to do it selflessly and without looking for recognition for what you do. And that is what several Verdes players did on Sunday in Benque Viejo del Carmen when they celebrated their 2-1 win over Garden City the night before taking pictures with one of their staunchest supporters, Hector ‘Moo’ Santos.

Moo, as he is popularly known in Benque, has Down Syndrome, but that doesn’t keep him back. With his affable and outgoing personality, he is loved by all. And football is his passion. After all, he grew up in a Verdes family, the Santos family where football was and is foremost and Verdes is the team they’ve always followed. In fact, along with the Rafael ‘Chapay’ Contreras’ family, the Santos were always next in line. So, when Verdes decided to take the weekend game to where the team’s roots are strongest, the old faithful came out to support. And Moo was there.

And as you can see by the accompanying pictures, even a day after, Moo sported a green shirt. This goes to show how much he loves the Green Machine.

And it’s certainly a good thing the Verdes’ players look up to him. Bet you they didn’t know World Down Syndrome Day was one day later: today, Monday March 21.

A day when Rossana Briceño, Special Envoy for the Development of Families and Children, called for people to wear mismatched socks in support of people with Down syndrome. A day when Down Syndrome International advocates for inclusive employment, education, health, and organizations for people with Down syndrome.

“Today, we reflect on Down syndrome and persons living with Down syndrome. Let’s spread awareness and support. Wear your mismatched socks,” said the Special Envoy today in a social media post.

“Why mismatched socks? The idea of mismatched socks as well as the date, 3/21, signifies the uniqueness of the 3rd chromosome on chromosome number 21.”

I bet you, had they known, Verdes and the other teams in the FFB Top League and other sports teams would have worn mismatched socks on the weekend.

But they can still do so next time out.

According to the World Down Syndrome Day website, Down syndrome is a naturally occurring chromosomal arrangement. Worlddownsyndromeday.org says Down Syndrome is a human condition that is universally present across racial, gender or socioeconomic lines in approximately 1 in 800 live births. Down syndrome affects humans causing different degrees of intellectual and physical disability.

And while it is a matter of concern and a matter we should take seriously and give people their right place, let’s also give thanks for people like Hector ‘Moo’ Santos, for they enrich our lives.

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