Meet Lucas, the first Gerber baby with Down syndrome

Welcome, Lucas!

The 2018 Gerber Baby was announced Wednesday morning. Chosen was the first Down syndrome baby since the company's contest launched 90 years ago.

Lucas, 1, was entered on a whim by his parents Cortney and Jason Warren who had heard of the contest through a relative. The smiling little boy beat out 140,000 other young applicants after his photo was posted to Instagram, along with the contest's hashtag.

As you can see, Lucas captured the heart of thousands, including executives from Gerber.

"Every year, we choose the baby who best exemplifies Gerber's longstanding heritage of recognizing that every baby is a Gerber baby," said CEO and president of Gerber Bill Partyka according to Today. "This year, Lucas is the perfect fit."

"He may have Down syndrome, but he's always Lucas first," explained mom Cortney. "He's got an awesome personality and he goes through the milestones of every child... we're hoping when he grows up and looks back on this, he'll be proud of himself and not ashamed of his disability."

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Echoed Jason, "We're hoping this will impact everyone — that it will shed a little bit of light on the special needs community and help more individuals with special needs be accepted and not limited. They have the potential to change the world, just like everybody else."

As the 2018 Gerber Spokesbaby, Lucas will be awarded $50,000. It's a sum the Warrens plan to put towards Lucas' education.

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