‘Understanding, accepting, embracing:’ How these twins with autism inspire their community

Anthony and Sammy Taormina were diagnosed with Asperger syndrome in 1990

Sammy (in pink shirt) and Anthony Taormina. Contributed photo
Sammy (in pink shirt) and Anthony Taormina. Contributed photo (Sammy Taormina)

For Anthony and Sammy Taormina, there are two dates that define their lives as people who suffer from Asperger syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder.

For the twin brothers who were born four minutes apart (Sammy came first), the first date was one they don’t remember, when they were diagnosed in October 1990 at the age of 3.

The next date came sometime in 2002, when the brothers seemed to fully comprehend the syndrome and the challenges it presented in their daily lives.

“You would always wonder, ‘Why do you struggle in sports, or why do you struggle at certain things?’” Anthony Taormina said. “Whether it be academics or athletics, you always want to be where other people are. You didn’t understand your limitations.”

While there have been, and there always will be challenges, and as Autism Awareness Month winds down, the brothers hope their story can serve as inspiration to those worried about autism or living through the realities.

Seeing things others don’t, and vice versa

Today, the brothers are 34-year-olds, graduates of Oakland University and they reside in their hometown of Lake Orion, Michigan, where they are involved in several tasks.

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