Julie grew up as one of seven children in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. Her parents did a fantastic job of instilling an unbeatable determination in her. She was always an athlete, spending hours a day in the gymnastics gym. In high school, she was captain of her high school team which won the Illinois State Championship. Through academic scholarships, grants, and teaching as a Professor’s Assistant, she was able to put herself through college at the University of Illinois. She graduated with honors in 1998 with a degree in Biology.

Andy grew up in the town next door with his parents and his older sister. His mom and dad knew they had to get him into sports right away or his energy might kill them all! He found soccer at the age of 5, and never looked back. Soccer allowed him to graduate from Northwestern University in 1998 with a degree in Communications.

Andy and Julie became best friends in high school while she was a cheerleader for his soccer team. They started dating their senior year, and stayed together during college by becoming way too familiar with the I-57 from Chicago to Champaign. After they got married in 1999, Julie paused her Medical School dream when Andy was invited to play soccer professionally. Seven years later, they had enjoyed soccer adventures in Chicago, Germany, Indianapolis, and Charlotte. While Andy messed around on soccer fields around the world, Julie worked as a Medical Researcher at Loyola University in Chicago, a Research Biologist at Eli Lilly in Indianapolis, and as an Adoption Coordinator at Christian Adoption Services in Charlotte. Andy spent his free time working as a Personal Trainer and teaching martial arts as a third-degree black belt.

When they started their family, it was finally time for Andy to get a “real job!” Andy, Julie, their not-quite one year old son, and their two boxer dogs drove across the country and started over in Phoenix. Andy became a cop with the Phoenix PD, and spent most of his seven years there on the Tactical Response Unit as part of a pro-active street crimes squad. He also spent a lot of time teaching as one of the head Subject Matter Experts for all the police departments in Arizona. During these years, the little “McDermott Clan” grew to six- two boys and two girls joined the adventure. And then in 2010, Will Ferrell came to town… They filmed a movie in Scottsdale called “Everything Must Go.” Andy’s modeling agent sent him to audition for a role playing a cop- and soon enough Andy was spending the day with Will working on a big movie set. Safe to say, he caught the bug- after a lifetime of dreaming about the movies, being in front of the camera made him feel alive in a way that he never had before.

After getting a few more opportunities, selling their house and disregarding all sense of logic, the McDermotts took a huge leap of faith and moved to Los Angeles. Little did they know this decision would require “superhuman” resilience unlike anything they had ever experienced. They have grown closer (especially in their 708 sq. ft apartment) and have simplified their daily routine to include just the most basic necessities. Join them on this journey and who knows, you may even be inspired to make some changes for your family.

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