Boy with special needs finds hope in basketball

A special needs boy in Texas who has always loved watching basketball is now getting in the game himself.

Charlie Johnson, 12, was born with a disability that for years made it nearly impossible for him to participate.

But thanks to his passion, the support of his family, and the help of his teachers, he's hitting the court.

His father, Brett, said their family loves sports.

"On any given weekend he would attend 6 games, 7 games but he had to watch the whole time," Brett Johnson told KTVT.

Charlie was born with Cortical Dysplasia, a condition that occurs when the top layer of the brain does not form properly.

"He's had to struggle with learning to run to play sports and frankly learning to speak," Brett Johnson said.

At the Notre Dame school, where they are devoted to teaching students with developmental disabilities, Charlie's gotten off the bleachers and hit the ground running.

Charlie is a huge basketball fan, and now he's winning on the court.

"In sports, everyone is equal. You get on the floor and it's you and your teammates. And that has opened him up and given him the confidence that not only carried him forward in sports - but also into real life," said Brett Johnson.

Last month, his school team took home gold at the North Texas Special Olympics tournament.
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