By Peter Bochner
James King, a 15-year-old British boy who suffers from Asperger’s syndrome, was recently given tickets to attend a Manchester United soccer match through his school, Middleton Technology.
Unfortunately, the boy, who describes himself as a diehard fan of the Manchester United Red Devils, was unable to attend the match as planned because he needed to stay home and be a caregiver to his mother, who was very ill.
When the Manchester United Foundation, which had originally arranged for James to get the tickets, learned that he was unable to attend the match and why, it arranged for Wayne Rooney, the captain of the Manchester United team, to surprise James by presenting him with a jersey autographed by the team and VIP tickets to a match.
When Rooney greeted James, he said, “I’ve heard your mum hasn’t been too well and I know you couldn’t make a previous game, so me and the team have signed a shirt for you and got you two VIP tickets – we’ll make sure you can go this time.”
After the meeting James, who spends all his free time caring for his seriously ill mother, said, “I’m so happy to have met my lifelong hero; I was speechless. He said the meeting with his hero came as a total surprise and he called it “the best day of my life.”
The two tickets were used by James and his mother, who enjoyed a VIP experience at United’s 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion at Old Trafford.
This piece was based on an article by The Mirror, which can be read here.
Peter Bochner is a writer and editor for subjects related to information technology and medicine. He has worked on such publications as Computerworld, Asian Sources and the Journal of Alzheimers Disease, served as editor for several TechTarget websites, and has written for several high-tech research firms. In addition, he served as editor for the recently published book Aspertools: The Practical Guide for Understanding and Embracing Asperger’s, Autism Spectrum Disorder and Neurodiversity, by Harold S. Reitman, M.D.