a Thousand words beyond the Hill

Jesse Osbourne

Her father would say she brings a spark to everyone’s day. She does.

She professes her love to strangers 10 minutes upon meeting them and is always hard up for hugs and affection. While she walked through her neighborhood, she crossed paths with a little white girl and immediately took her hand. The two walked happily down the street until the parents called them back. Her friendship knows no racial boundaries.

Kaitlyn Peake was born with Down’s Syndrome nine years ago. Her father, a reverend at Corinth Baptist Church in Fleming, said she has caused the family to grow in their faith.

“Taking care of Kaitlyn is a two-parent job,” Steve Peake said.

Steve works the late-night shift at Whitesburg hospital, while Rosa stays at home with Kaitlyn. Rosa’s paintings of landscapes and barber shop scenes decorate the house walls where Kaitlyn plays. When Kaitlyn was born, Rosa gave up painting.

Down’s Syndrome has not dampened Kaitlyn’s spirit. She speaks often of having parties, she dances to the Backstreet Boys and she loves to get on the altar during her dad’s service to pray and sing.

Last Sunday she proudly stepped in front of the church, stole the microphone from her dad and praised the Lord. A stranger might say she has a beautiful soul.

Jesse Osbourne is a junior photojournalism major from Lebanon. He can be reached at [email protected]