My brother, Jack, runs track for our church, St. Patrick's. His coach organized the 50 M dash so not only could Sammy run it, but he would win. The video of the race is below.
I can't even express how much this meant to me and my family. Sammy never has the opportunity to do things like this or do things with peers his age. He never has the opportunity to be supported by a crowd of people and to participate in something with those who are typically developing.
Not only was I so thankful for this gesture, but I was so excited to see how understanding and supportive my brother's teammates and even the opponents
were during this race. The race brought tears to my eyes as I heard everyone cheering and watching Sammy cross the finish line with Jack.
I am so proud of Jack for doing this -- even though it was his track meet, he was there to help pull Sammy along during the race and encouraged him the entire way. I am so happy and proud of both of my brothers. They are growing into such good and respectable young men. It also meant so much to us that Sammy received a medal for his race that was engraved. It is so touching that the team went to so much trouble and put so much love and effort into Sammy's race.
This whole event meant so much to me and I cannot even begin to explain how thankful I am to all of those involved. It was such a heartwarming performance and I am so happy Sammy had this opportunity.
Autism from a sibling's point of view...
My name is Paige and I am 24 years old. I graduated from Towson University with a Psychology Bachelors Degree. I am now working towards my Master's in Education of Autism and other Pervasive Disorders at Johns Hopkins. I am also a Behavior Data Specialist at the Kennedy Krieger Institute Neurobehavioral Inpatient Unit. My younger brother, Sammy, is 19 and has Autism. He is completely non-verbal, unaware of safety, is not toilet trained, cannot get himself dressed, and has difficulty with everyday activities that we all take advantage of. He works harder every single day of his life than anyone I know and he always does it with a smile on his face. He is my true hero and inspiration and because of him, I have dedicated my life to advocating and creating opportunities for individuals with Autism. I hope that I can make him proud and this blog is just a small part of the awareness I hope I can create about Autism and support other siblings impacted by Autism. I love you Sammy - thank you for everything.