Mercer Islander Chris Givan meets Shaquem Griffin on Aug. 30. Photo courtesy of Laurie Givan

Mercer Islander Chris Givan meets Shaquem Griffin on Aug. 30. Photo courtesy of Laurie Givan

Young Islander meets Seahawk inspiring kids with limb deficiencies

Rookie Shaquem Griffin is changing the game as the first one-handed player in the NFL.

Chris Givan, an Islander and son of Mercer Island Chamber of Commerce Director Laurie Givan, had a chance to meet a professional athlete with whom he shares a special similarity.

One of the newest Seattle Seahawks, linebacker Shaquem Griffin, became the first one-handed player in the NFL this year. He was born with amniotic band syndrome, and had his left hand amputated when he was four years old.Chris was born without his lower right arm.

Chris went to a camp in August through an organization called NubAbility Athletics, and they went to the last Seahawks preseason game on Aug. 30. The kids got to go on the field before and after the game, Laurie said, and Griffin came out and talked to, signed shirts for and took pictures with them.

“It’s was a pretty amazing experience for Chris and I’m sure all the other kids as well,” Laurie said. “Shaquem is really changing the way people think about people born with limb deficiencies.”

Critics thought that Griffin wouldn’t get drafted this year, let alone play in a game. But after impressing at the NFL combine and in the preseason, Griffin started for the Seahawks alongside his twin brother, Shaquill Griffin, on Sunday. The Seahawks lost 27-24 to the Denver Broncos in their season opener.

More in Life

Marion (left) and James Burtt of Mercer Island. Courtesy photo
                                Courtesy photo 
                                Marion (left) and James Burtt of Mercer Island.
50 years together

The Burtts celebrate anniversary

Issaquah resident Daniel F. McAllaster receives his French Legion of Honor Medal from the Consul General of France in San Francisco, Emmanuel Lebrun-Damiens at the Museum of Flight on May 10. Courtesy photo of the Consular Agency of France in Seattle
                                The U.S. Veterans were awarded the French Legion of Honor Medal at the Museum of Seattle on May 10. Courtesy photo of the Consular Agency of France in Seattle
Eastside Veterans awarded the French Legion of Honor Medal

Daniel F. McAllaster and Richard A. Nelms awarded for their service in France during WWII

photo: Daian Gan
First Friday art walk May 3

Artists Barbara Bouman Jay and Scott Gibson will be on hand for an exhibit opening.

Photo courtesy of Mercer Island High School
                                Beatrice and Benedick, two of Shakespeare’s wittiest characters, have sworn off love. Hero and Claudio have jumped into love. The Mercer Island High School drama department is performing “Much Ado About Nothing” by William Shakespeare for its spring production. Performances began on April 25 and will also be at 7 p.m., May 2 to 4. Presale tickets are $10 or $15 at the door. Seniors are $5. A pay-what-you-can performance will be held at 2p.m. on May 4. Tickets can be purchased from members of the cast or online at mercerislandschools.org/drama.
Love is in the air

Spring production at Mercer Island High School

Six Mercer Island teams qualify for Global Finals

Destination Imagination teams update

Record number of Mercer Island teams qualify for Destination Imagination state event

Fourteen (14) Mercer Island teams qualified for the state Destination Imagination (DI)… Continue reading

Mercer Island Preschool Association’s Circus will return on April 27

Activities include bounce houses, face painting and of course, a dunk tank.

Students embark

Exchange program underway for Island, sister city.

125 sack lunches were to the Safe Parking Program at the Lake Washington Methodist Church, Sophia Way, The Together Center, and to the residents of Camp Unity and Safe Parking at St. Jude’s. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo.
St. Jude’s Service Day Program helps combat poverty

The annual service day helps organizations who help Eastside communities experiencing poverty and abuse.

Libraries are places of connection and community pride | Library column

Written by Lisa Rosenblum, the director of the King County Library System.

Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo 
                                Tom Kofler helps build the tiny house at Mercer Island United Methodist Church.
A response to homelessness: United Methodist Church builds a Tiny House for the homeless

The church will build the Tiny House during the month of April.

Mercer Islanders make pilgrimage to Israel

Chaplain Greg Asimakoupoulos and two Covenant Shores residents over 90 years old made the trip.