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Local couple has much to celebrate

They were married at St. Paul's Church in Oneida and their reception was at Dibbles Inn in Vernon. Erin laughs as she remembers one funny moment at their reception when John was looking for the garter belt and looked up the wrong leg. They honeymooned in Cape Cod.

Michelle Waterman, John and Erin's Service Coordinator, says that with the help of Madison Cortland ARC, John and Erin found a nice home.

"It took a while to find this one," remembers Erin.

"Everything had to be just right," said Robin Collins because of state safety regulations regarding housing for people with disabilities. Collins along with Suzanne Jones were the couple's service coordinators during the time when John and Erin decided to live on their own.

Through Madison Cortland ARC, the couple now receives at-home residential habilitation which assists them in doing daily tasks. They get help organizing bills, and other home budgeting tasks.

"We are pretty independent." Erin says with a smile, of the life she shares with her husband.

As a testament to that independence, Erin represents Madison County on a newly formed Self-advocacy committee in Madison County called "The Madison County Motivators." She was nominated and is currently running for President of that committee.

Prior to joining that committee, Erin was asked to fill a paid position serving on the DSO/Madison County Self Advocates Advisory Committee.

She has long been interested in advocacy work for individuals with developmental disabilities. "I'm excited to work with other advocates at the state level."

They also are a busy couple. When they are not working and taking care of their home, they are traveling. The happy couple loves to take trips to see NASCAR races.

"What are we doing this year?" she asks John as they settle in on the couch. They are taking a NASCAR trip, and a cruise with two close friends. The NASCAR trip will take them to races in Loudon, New Hampshire and the Poconos.

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