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Students make touching choice at homecoming

Students with Autism Named Homecoming Queen and King

Basketball homecoming is a special tradition at Tri-West high school in Indiana. Of course there are some differences between the October celebration for football and this one in February -- but it's for the best. The basketball homecoming is smaller, and it makes the school feel more like a family.

The stars of this year's February homecoming were Seth Knox and Kelsey Roeser, two students with severe autism. Seth and Kelsey's peers nominated them to be part of the pool that might make it to the 16-person homecoming court.

As life skills teacher Camille Dorrell was counting the votes, she was overjoyed to see that they were selected -- but the really special moment came during the event.

When the entire student body voted, Seth and Kelsey were the overwhelming favorites. 'It gets me teary-eyed. It's just so touching,' Camille said. Seth had nearly 100 percent of the vote, while Kelsey won by a margin of 80 percent.

Seth's mom was worried about bullying when he first started. Now, she's overjoyed at just how wrong those fears were. 'Everybody loves him!,' she said happily.

Kelsey's mom loves how her daughter is supported by her fellow students. 'For this group of kids to accept these special needs kids ... you can't put that into words, what that means as a parent.'

During a cold weather tradition, there was no shortage of warmth at Tri-West high school.

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Gina February 11 2014 at 11:27 PM

It's so good to see stories like this. It gives one hope that there are new generations of kids growing up that are going to be more tolerable to other people and their issues. Just maybe the world will keep changing for the better and one day everyone will be accepted equally. Ok, that might take a LONG time but at least with stories like these, they're on their way!

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bruce February 11 2014 at 11:04 PM

anyone can agree that this is a heartwarming story, and who can object to the selections, but i have a problem with the bullying reference, i would like to hear from the overweight teens at tri-west, and see how they feel about how they are treated, do they think that they would ever have a chance at homecoming king or queen?

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chibblitz February 11 2014 at 10:58 PM

Oh what's next .......

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kissmylips13 February 11 2014 at 10:48 PM

A touching story. My daughters class also voted for a girl that has needed special crutches due to a car accident when she was six months old. The girl was voted Homecoming queen. I and so many other parents were proud of our children for giving their chance up to a wonderful girl/friend. My daughter was on homecoming court...she rallied for her friend..yes a proud momma!!!

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Hello Carrie&Ed February 11 2014 at 10:36 PM

wow.........................................I am so proud to be a homosapien!!!!!!!!!!!

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Maribeth & Tom February 11 2014 at 10:13 PM

I have a special needs grandson, and I would be thrilled if he could be king. He is the light of my life - the king of my life! I am so grateful for him and his smile and his good heart and his love for others. I am blessed.

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1 reply to Maribeth & Tom's comment
seattlewkr February 11 2014 at 11:24 PM

I'd vote for him!

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mlnicolshaw February 11 2014 at 10:12 PM

To all the students at Tri-West High School who do not bully these students (or others) - I applaud you for giving the two something they "normal-ly" would not have gotten. PLEASE keep it up and stamp out any bullying at its first signs. Bullying should not be accepted and is not just a part of growing up - if it was then people would stop doing it when they grow up.

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frmthebookofrage February 11 2014 at 9:43 PM

If we don't blow whip ourselves out or the Heavens don't come down on us and this generation has a chance to become something it show there is still small hope that one day all the people on the planet will finaly get it this is Great.......sadly though there is far to go lets hope there is alot of time left in out hour glass

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rdx1946 February 11 2014 at 9:40 PM

Nice story!

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casey6097 February 11 2014 at 9:40 PM

Wish all schools had wonderful students like this. Bullying would no longer exist and adults could take lessons from them.

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