Boy, 16, takes special needs friend to prom

April 19, 2012 8:22:30 PM PDT
The prom, a high school tradition, almost didn't happen for one 18-year-old girl. But she went to the prom Thursday night, thanks to a determined mom and a nice guy.

With perfect hair and makeup, matching dress, tie and flowers, Amber House and Matt Gill posed for their umpteenth picture.

Pre-prom, it was a rite of passage Amber's parents weren't sure she'd ever know.

Eighteen-year-old Amber has Down syndrome. Her parents say she's a social butterfly so she's always had friends, but they weren't confident she'd have a date. Her mom, Peggy House, started campaigning a few months ago. Turns out she didn't need to.

"I actually called her back and said that's really too much to ask so just forget about it, and she said 'Why? He's going to ask her today' and I started bawling," she said.

Sixteen-year-old Matt stepped up.

"I asked her if she would come to prom with me," Matt said.

"I said yes," Amber said.

Matt and Amber know each other from home school choir. He says she was always his first choice.

"She's awesome, she's a fun person and it's great to hang out with her," Matt said.

It's a little gesture that means a lot, especially so since this is Amber's first date.

"To have him take an interest in her like that was exciting for us," said Amber's dad, Glenn House.

And it comes complete with all the nerves.

"Trying not to say the wrong thing, that's what's going through my mind," Matt said.

There will be plenty of friends and their first limo ride, all leading up to the main attraction.

"Amber's a great dancer," Matt said.

It's a night of joy for those who love her.

"She probably won't have all the other moments, that kids -- all her friends are going off to college and get married and all that, so for her to have this special evening is just amazing," Peggy said.

This is the prom for the Home School Christian Youth Association. The parents say the good thing about this prom is that they can sleep in Friday morning and then start their school work.


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