Olympia man with Down Syndrome plans world tour

All his life, an Olympia man has been told he can't, because he has Down Syndrome. He's ready to prove everyone wrong with a world tour.

OLYMPIA, Wash. – All his life Dylan Kuehl has proved people in Olympia wrong. Now he’s ready to take his act on the road.

Kuehl, 33, has Down Syndrome. The Olympia artist plays drums for the Michael Jackson Memory Band, and next year he’s taking them on a world tour.

“We’re going to bring awareness to disabilities,” said Kuehl.

He knows he looks different on the outside, but he hopes when people see him playing the drums and dancing on stage they won’t think of him as slow or special.

“I just show myself as being unique,” said Kuehl. “Don’t look at me in the outside shell, just see the inside of me.”

The idea of the tour came from an unlikely, and famous source: Michael Jackson’s family.

Thanks to the non-profit Gifts from the Heart for Downs, Keuhl got to perform in June for Jackson’s mother Katherine and his brother Jermaine Jackson, a member of the Jackson 5 group.

Keuhl’s mother, Terri Rose, said Jermaine Jackson was impressed with the performance.

“He said Dylan is good,” said Rose, “He dances, he drums, he’s an amazing artist.”

That prompted Kuehl and Rose to take their show around the world. Playing Jackson’s music, Kuehl hopes to raise awareness about Down Syndrome.

“It’s a wish come true,” said Kuehl.

For more information on the tour, go to healthworldtour.org

The family has a GoFundMe account set up to help raise money to pay for the tour.

Copyright 2016 KING


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