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"Our son was born with Down syndrome, which is a very devastating diagnosis for any parent to hear. Anyone who has had this experience knows that you first have to go through a mourning process for the child that you wanted to have, and then you can start embracing the child that G-d gave you. So, both my wife and I were going through a difficult time then."
"In February 1985, when the baby – whom we named Avraham after my father-in-law – was two-and-a-half months old, we decided to travel from Los Angeles to Florida by way of New York. We stopped in Brooklyn with the hope of getting an audience with the Rebbe and receiving a blessing for the baby."
"As it turned out, an audience was not possible, but we were instructed to wait outside the Rebbe’s office and, when he passed by upon his return from the synagogue after Minchahprayers, to ask him for a blessing then."
"Seeing us standing there, the Rebbe stopped. He looked at our Avremel, took a coin out of his pocket and put into the baby’s hand. But, because of the Down syndrome, Avremel didn’t have the muscle tone to hold onto the coin, and it fell."
"Before I could react, the Rebbe stooped down and picked up the coin from the floor. He put it back into Avremel’s hand and this time folded his little fingers around it."
"And then the Rebbe leaned toward my wife and said, “These children are my generals. You shouldn’t worry.”
"Then the Rebbe said something more which she couldn’t quite make out, but she thought he said, “He will be a blessing.”