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Max was adopted by the Founders of Angels in Disguise, Mike and Penny Michalak, in 2014. Max was diagnosed with Down syndrome as well as Arterial Pulmonary Hypertension. Although they knew their time with Max would be short, they welcomed him into the family. Perhaps if he had parents to advocate for him earlier in his life, his story would have ended differently.


In the summer of 2018, Max was given six months to live. God graciously allowed Max to be with his family for much longer than expected. He was able to do and experience so many things that brought him joy, as he brought joy to others. He passed away on December 9, 2019, the day before his 8th birthday.

Although there is great sorrow in his passing, there is also reason to find joy. Instead of dying alone in an orphanage, the joy of adoption brought him a family, connection and faith.

This loss only reiterates the very real life or death consequences, for children with Down syndrome. The Angels in Disguise adoption grants program have helped bring over 100 children home to their Forever Families, and our new initiative to “Help Heal Broken Hearts” has provided funds for 6 heart surgeries for children with Down syndrome.


Please help us keep the memory of Max alive by supporting Angels in Disguise!

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