Throughout Annie’s illness and with her passing, we have been touched and overwhelmed with the outpouring of love, care and compassion from all of those who knew her. Recently, there was a post on Annie’s Facebook page that read, “Grief is the last act of love we can give to those we loved. Where there is deep grief there was great love.” Annie was the epitome of love. She loved unconditionally and her love was far reaching. Those she loved and regarded as friends truly outnumbered the stars in the sky. Remembering this about her life and the legacy she leaves behind is helping our deeply grieving hearts to heal. Amid this difficult time, there are no words to fully express our gratitude for all those stars in Annie’s life. As hard as this journey has been and continues to be, the blessings we have experienced and are experiencing through Annie far outweigh the grief of losing her. Thank you for easing our pain and for keeping her spirit alive through your kind words and generosity.
~with love, the Forts Family
In 1997, as part of a community-wide celebration to honor member Annie Forts, the Moultonboro Lions Club decided to help Ann realize her dream to start a new fund to assist and encourage young people with Down Syndrome. The fund was incorporated in NH as The Annie Forts “UP” Syndrome Fund, Inc. and approved by IRS as a 501 (c) (3) non-profit charitable fund. $50,000 was raised at the celebration. Over $300,000 has been received in donations to date towards Ann’s ultimate goal of $1,000,000. Only interest earned is used to provide enrichment opportunities to persons with Down Syndrome and to help support individuals interested in pursuing a career in Special Education. Since the fund was started in 1997, the awards committee for Annie’s Fund has issued financial awards totaling $115,000.
February 27, 2002, Washington, DC- Annie was awarded the Paul G. Hearne Leadership Award from the American Association of People with Disabilities. Annie was one of seven recipients chosen from over 400 nominees.