Tyrelle (or Ty) Autman playfully downplays the significance of having a twin brother, laughing as he suggests that Terence (or T) is ‘just another sibling.’ As he tells me, I watch and listen to both, finding ironic similarities in their wording and mannerisms. While I contemplate expressing skepticism, I realize I’m far from qualified to argue their logic and instead listen. Terence offers, ‘We get along well, for the most part.
The Tale of T & Ty
BY BARRY ENGELHARDT
The community is very together, in tune with each other. Very supportive of things such as academics and athletics.
After a minute or two, I started to notice subtle differences between the two. Tyrelle often speaks first, using a detailed approach, whereas Terence hangs back, quietly listening and saying a bit less. His answers are often more to confirm his brother’s response agrees with his own and less focused on supplying new information as if one can speak for the other. While their message is similar, Terence’s delivery isn’t, his voice noticeably deeper.
The two youngest in their family, they’ve lived in Momence their entire lives and appreciate how the town’s residents come together. Terence suggests, “The community is very together, in tune with each other. Very supportive of things such as academics and athletics.”
Tyrelle and Terence are seniors and three-sport athletes, playing football, basketball, and running track. Regarding track, they’re both sprinters, running the 100- and 200-meter dash and multiple short-distance relays. I ask each, in turn, what their favorite sport is, but neither takes the bait. Both suggest they enjoy aspects of every sport. Overall, they agree that it’s their team that motivates them.
“It’s kind of like having another family. The team bonding moments are just fun overall,” says Terence. Tyrelle adds, “I enjoy being with people, being able to do what I like. I like playing the same sports on the same teams.
When asked if their coaches struggle to tell them apart, they agree that their coaches quickly learn who is who. One brother, I forget who, adds that football can be the exception, suggesting that wearing helmets and numberless practice jerseys can sometimes complicate matters.
When the subject shifts to school, both agree that their favorite subject is forensics. This science class entered the curriculum last year and has been very popular. As hands-on learners, they consider it fun to learn how to navigate a crime scene and how professionals search for clues to solve investigations.
While both want to continue to work in hands-on professions and attend trade schools next year, they share that their paths will likely split. Terence wants to study diesel mechanics, leaning into the knowledge he’s currently gaining through an automotive mechanics course he’s taking through the Kankakee Area Career Center. Tyrelle also wants to work with his hands and plans on becoming an electrician. While he understands the importance of gaining knowledge and experience, he eventually wants to start a small business and work for himself.
When focusing on their differences, Tyrelle shares that he considers himself the mean brother (with Terence politely agreeing), whereas Terence says he is more outgoing. Both consider themselves introverted by nature. Ultimately, both brothers are hard-working, strong, persistent, and consider a positive mindset the key to success.
Tyrelle and Terence each carry themselves like old souls, speaking with positivity and wisdom well past their age. At first glance, the connection is obvious. Still, the longer you look, the more subtle cues start to develop that each is different and quite unique. Whether their connection as twins leads them down similar, parallel, or completely different paths, I’m confident they’ll always have one another on their journey, which began in Momence, and that they will both go far.