Shooting for the Stars – Conner’s Story

We first introduced Conner to our donors and friends in Spring 2010. At 2 ½ years old he started walking and learning to talk with help from pediatric therapists at Capper Foundation, after a surgery to disconnect the sides of his brain proved to be the miracle needed to give him a more normal life. This life-changing surgery stopped the over 30 seizures a day Conner was enduring and allowed this sweet toddler to actively engage in the world around him instead of napping most of the day to recover from the seizures.

Fast forward 12 years to 2022. Conner will start high school this fall with the dream of one day becoming a meteorologist and taking over Matt Miller’s job at KSNT 27 News in Topeka. After meeting his therapy goals, he was discharged from Capper services in 2019. Conner continues to become more self-sufficient with daily living skills such as getting ready for school, making his own breakfast, and getting ready for bed. Chores including laundry, taking out the trash, and recycling as well as helping care for the family dog, Lucy, prepare him to one day live as independently as possible.

“As Conner learned during therapy sessions at Capper, we learned and implemented suggestions and ideas at home. Capper Foundation made it possible for him to be where he is today!” —Mark and Michelle Schonlaw, Conner’s parents

Inclusion in activities with his peers has Conner growing leaps and bounds socially and empowers his confidence. He proudly served as a manager for the 8th grade boys’ basketball team this school year which led to him sitting with a couple of different groups of friends during lunch. Adaptive recreation including iCan Bike and iCan Swim, hosted by Capper Foundation, and an introduction to snow skiing have also been life-enhancing experiences for Conner and his family.