The mother of a Michigan boy shared a heart wrenching story with some of her friends, and the Michigan Press and Kalamazoo Wings came to the rescue. When Jennifer, the mom of an 11 year old boy named Colin, asked her son if he wanted a party for his birthday, Colin told her there would be no point since he didn’t have any friends. Colin has a condition similar to Asperger’s syndrome, which means that social skills are not easy for him. At school, nobody will sit by Colin at lunch, so he goes into an office and eats by himself every day. Jennifer says he does this so he won’t have to make people unhappy with his presence.
Jennifer’s heart went out to her little boy when she heard this, and she started a birthday Facebook page for him. When pro-hockey players on the Kalamazoo Wings heard that Colin had no friends and might be alone on his birthday, they showed up at the restaurant to help Colin celebrate turning 11. The players presented Coli with a one-day contract to be part of the team. This allowed Colin to attend his first-ever hockey game, throw out the first puck, and sit on the bench with the team during the entire game.
News spread throughout Michigan, and Colin received thousands of cards and numerous presents in the mail. Parties were thrown for him, and one of them was even given by the Air Zoo in Kalamazoo – which invited Colin’s church as well!
The entire nation got behind Colin, and the Good Morning America show threw him a huge birthday party where they presented him with a surprise trip to Disney World. Colin was very surprised – he thought he was going into a studio to test a video game. Colin was also surprised when the GMA show put the Happy Birthday Colin Facebook page on the giant screen in GMA’s Times Square studio. Colin had never seen the page and he was able to view warm messages of support and birthday wishes from all over the world. The page received over 2 million “likes.”
A mom’s dream of showing her son how loved and special he is came true. Colin has met and spoken with hundreds of people during his birthday celebrations. The outpouring of cards, gifts and messages has shown him how much people care.
Jennifer told GMA online that it wasn’t just Colin’s birthday that inspired her to create the Facebook page, but it was mainly the parents of Colin’s classmates. Jennifer had found out that many parents were trying to take their kids out of Colin’s classes, and a teacher told Colin about it. Jennifer was very saddened by this. She feels that Colin’s peers don’t understand him, so she wanted to go to a place where her friends and adults are and have them write warm messages so she could share them with Colin on his birthday.
Colin received numerous messages from mothers who have children with conditions similar to Colin’s. Many of these kids struggle with facial expressions and verbal cues. Jennifer feels that being misunderstood for being different is a big problem for kids who have issues like Colin’s. She thinks that too many parents are letting their children exclude others because of “weirdness.”
This was Colin’s first birthday party since he turned 5 – a party in which only one kid showed up. This year, Colin has been showered with love and affection, and he has gotten to travel to different states. A corvette company even sent a car to take him to school one day.
Colin will never forget his mother’s love, or how special people from all over the world made him feel. He had never been included in so many activities with so many people.
REITER & WALSH: ADVOCATES FOR CHILDREN FOR OVER 25 YEARS
Reiter & Walsh ABC Law Centers is a national birth injury law firm that has been helping and advocating for children for decades. Jesse Reiter, the co-founder of the firm, has been focusing solely on birth injury cases for over 25 years. He is currently recognized as one of the best medical malpractice attorneys in America by U.S. News and World Report 2014, which also recognized ABC Law Centers as one of the best law firms in the country. The attorneys at ABC Law Centers have won numerous awards for their advocacy of children and are members of the Birth Trauma Litigation Group (BTLG) and the Michigan Association for Justice (MAJ).
If your child was diagnosed with a permanent disability, such as cerebral palsy, hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), intellectual disabilities or developmental delays, the award winning attorneys at ABC Law Centers can help. We have helped children throughout the country obtain compensation for lifelong treatment, therapy and a secure future, and we give personal attention to each child and family we help. Our nationally recognized firm has numerous multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements that attest to our success, and no fees are ever paid to our firm until we win your case. Email or call Reiter & Walsh ABC Law Centers at 888-419-2229 for a free case evaluation.