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DeSoto Parish teen with autism attends senior prom with dream da - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

DeSoto Parish teen with autism attends senior prom with dream date

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(Photo source: Erin Buchanan/KTBS) (Photo source: Erin Buchanan/KTBS)
(Photo source: Erin Buchanan/KTBS) (Photo source: Erin Buchanan/KTBS)
DESOTO PARISH, La. (KTBS) -

"To see the world through Christian's eyes is amazing."

That's because 18-year-old Christian English sees it like no one else.

"That just brings a whole nother level of joy to everybody."

But it was years before anyone in his family really understood what was wrong, and at 3 1/2, Christian was diagnosed with autism, though not much was known about it back then.

"When you have a special needs child, there are certain things they're not going to be able to do like everybody else," says mom Heather English, who put together a touching YouTube video several months ago wistfully wondering who may be Christian's date to prom.

The Stanley High School senior will probably never get a driver's license, buy his first home, watch his child take its first steps.

Truths that Heather English has come to accept, though it's never been easy.

"He's on a 2nd or 3rd grade level, so we have to celebrate the things as they come along, no matter how big or small."

He didn't speak until he was five, but as the DeSoto Parish teen prepares to meet his senior prom date, that seems like a distant memory, at least for today.

"He's excited about getting to make his move on the dance floor," Heather says with a smile, adding that he's gotten plenty of practice with his dancing themed video games at home.

When KTBS 3 first aired his story in January, it wasn't long before it caught the eye of 15-year-old Parkway High School Freshman, Breanne Toth.

RELATED STORY: Austistic DeSoto Parish teen looking for prom date through YouTube video

"My brother has autism, and he's five years old and he was diagnosed about 2 1/2 years ago," Bre says.

The special place Bre holds in her heart for those with special needs, prompted her to reach out, showing a wisdom beyond her years.

"She came home that night after she was with her friends, and she said, you know, this really made me cry, it really touched me. And she said, I want to go with him, I want to make his night," says Bre's mom Lori Hatcher.

Christian's family knew right away that Bre was his dream date, even if he didn't quite know it himself.

"This is one night that Christian gets to himself to enjoy, and do what he wants to do and how he wants to do it," Bre says. "Think about it, if you were autistic, you'd want someone to give you this opportunity."

"Of course I'm excited!" Christian says, getting a big laugh from family and friends, before twirling Bre around to show off his dance moves.

The easy laughter of a mother-son moment, the priceless feel of learning how to lead your date on the dance floor...

"We're trying to show him how to escort her in."

The small - but very important - things every mother cherishes, and every parent of a child with autism holds dear.

"This is his first date, ever, and he probably won't have another one after this..but who knows, it's in God's hands."

Because every milestone is a triumph.

"Usually, if they're small to someone else they're pretty big to us."

Several people in the community pitched in and donated their services to make Christian's night one to remember.

And what's more memorable than being crowned prom king?

His classmates at Stanley High School, near Logansport, voted that the honor should go to him.

April is Autism Awareness Month and to learn more, click here.

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