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Man With Down Syndrome Owns Restaurant, Serves Hugs

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Stacy Lambe

By Stacy Lambe on March 1, 2013

Despite having Down syndrome, Tim Harris always wanted to own a restaurant. Even though his parents didn’t take him seriously at first, they rallied behind him to help him achieve his dream.

Talk about living the dream: Now, the 27-year-old is believed to be the only person in the country with Down’s that owns a restaurant.


“From the minute I was born, I always wanted to be a part of the world around me,” Harris told a special group of visitors. With Tim’s Place, he is doing just that by serving “breakfast, lunch and hugs.”

“My favorite part of the day is giving out free Tim hugs,” he said during a speech at Northern Michigan University on Thursday. According to a counter in the restaurant, Harris has served over 32,000 hugs.

Harris, who is also a Special Olympics athlete and has more medals than Michael Phelps, is a powerful inspiration to the those with disabilities and the fully abled. Watch a short video about his story here:

• SEE ALSO: This Photo Letter From a Guy With Down Syndrome and His Awesome Big Sis Will Make You Cry

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