When 15-year-old Henry Stratman, who has Down Syndrome, found out that his house had been broken into and his beloved iPad taken, he was devastated. He had been banking his paychecks for over a year in order to save up the money for the coveted item. He’d only had it for a short time.

In the interview below his mom describes how hard he worked to save the money.


After the theft, he asked his mom why “the bad people stole my iPad?”

His mom, Wendy Kerr, answered as best she could: “Someone thought that they needed your iPad more than you do.” Then she held him while he cried. 

When Henry’s story went up on the Lost Coast Outpost this morning, there was an outpouring of offers to help. One woman contacted Simeon Tauber, owner Simply Macintosh in Arcata. He offered to donate $100 on an iPad and facilitate its purchase. He was quickly paired with another group of Facebook members (mostly local folk but including a man from Oklahoma) who had gathered enough money to replace Henry’s iPad. “It is all taken care of. [A new iPad] is coming into Simply Macintosh today,” explained one of the group of community members.

The group wants to be anonymous and Tauber downplayed his contribution, “I have a kid with disability. He loves his iPad….I will sleep better at night having done this.”

The community’s response doesn’t really surprise Kerr. She says that Humboldt is a wonderful place and the people are very generous—”more than any other community I’ve ever known.” Listen to her talk nice about our community here:


But she is delighted with the help for her son. “Talk about turning an absolute negative into a positive,” she exclaimed. “It makes it so it isn’t such a bad thing after all.”


Did you want to help Henry but someone beat you to it? There are many, many kids who could use an iPad. Kerr said that iPad’s are “such a good tool” for kids without speech or other learning disabilities. She recommends a local group, Families Advocating Autism Now, that would be glad to purchase iPads for local kids. Your donation could go a long way towards helping a child with disabilities. You can donate by Paypal or by check. The details on how to do this can be found here.

Thanks, LoCO readers for helping Henry. You made our day!

The audio pieces above came from a touching interview with Henry’s mom, Wendy Kerr, on KHUM with Mike Dronkers and Andrew Goff. Listen to the entire piece below.