Home Questions Reading To A Parent For Relatives About Us Stories Resources Forum Pictures Site Map

[Home] [Questions] [To A Parent] [About Us] [Resources] [Pictures] [Reading] [For Relatives] [Stories] [Forum] [Site Map]

Down Syndrome
by Professor Jerome Lejeune

Professor Jerome Lejeune, Nobel Prize Winner, Discoverer of the gene for Down syndrome

"Many years ago, my father was a Jewish physician in Braunau, Austria. On a particular day, two babies had been delivered by one of his colleagues. One was a fine, healthy boy with a strong cry. His parents were extremely proud and happy. The other was a little girl, but her parents were extremely sad, for she was a mongoloid [Down syndrome] baby. I followed them both for almost fifty years. The girl grew up, living at home, and was finally destined to be the one who nursed her mother through a very long and lingering illness after a stroke. I do not remember her name. I do, however, remember the boy's name. He died in a bunker in Berlin. His name was Adolf Hitler."

Note: This story is almost assuredly apocryphal. I am leaving it here because even though it probably isn't true, it does express a truth. That truth is that we never know what our children will become. A healthy baby can grow up be a murderer while a baby with a chromosomal abnormality can grow up to be a loving and loved person. On the TV show, Touched by an Angel an episode featured a couple who found out that their unborn child had Down syndrome. The couple were sitting in a diner and the father was talking about what he wanted for his son and why he wanted his wife to have an abortion. A young man walked in wearing a letter jacket from the local high school and when the father sees him he says that he wants his son to grow up to be like that young man. With that, the young man pulls a gun out and robs the diner.

[Back] [Next]

This page last updated on 15 April 2008.

Copyright © 1997-2008
Thomas and Michel Paul - Email: tom.and.michel AT gmail DOT com