Football is football and talent is talent, but the mindset of your team makes all the difference. – Robert Griffin III


We’ll wager that this was even better than a trip to Disneyland for young Ike! The natural tendency is to gush about the teams, coaches and staff for making this possible, but dig a little deeper and there’s an even more powerful story.

It’s the story about an unassuming, yet inspirational figure, an individual whose spirit continues to touch countless others in a chain reaction of brotherhood, understanding, charity, compassion and agape love. Congrats on the TD, Ike, and thanks for the Awesome lesson in humility.

Ever heard of the “Ike Special?” Ike Ditzenberger is a junior with Down syndrome at Snohomish High School in Washington State. He dreamed of scoring a touchdown for his football team in a real game, and his chance came in the last quarter against their rivals, the Lake Stevens Vikings, when his coach called for the “Ike Special.”

“For him being able to be like his older brothers, is a really big deal.”

Ike knew exactly what to do; he’d practiced the “Ike Special” every day at the end of each Panthers football practice session and knew it by heart. With 10 seconds left in the game, Ike grabbed the ball and ran for 51 yards to the end zone, putting the Panthers on the board in their 35-6 loss against the Vikings.

Snohomish High Students show their spirit at the annual Serpentine Parade.
Snohomish High Students, faculty and parents show their spirit at the annual Homecoming Serpentine Parade.

Aside from his love of the game, his mother Kay says that Ike learns mostly by imitating, so “For him being able to watch and learn by doing, and to be like his older brothers, is a really big deal.”


–  WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYiNG  –

YouTube: “awesome simply awesome sad that this sportsmanship isn’t regular. great players great coaches great class. this shouldn’t be a rarity. awesome.” – kbholla   “I live in snohomish, and everyone talked to Ike even before this. He asked out the prom queen to a dance and she said yes. everyone loves Ike.” – killerducklingfart68

Students and staff from Snohomish High School wear purple to show support for Armin Jahr Elementary school student Amina Kocer-Bowman.
Students and staff from Snohomish High School wear purple to show support for Armin Jahr Elementary school student Amina Kocer-Bowman.

Facebook: This week I learned something very important. The people who love me will always support me… even if that means crying in front of them. Always support the ones you love and let them know you are there for them. – Ike “The Ike Special”


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