Corning prom-posal couple reunites for prom

Corning prom-posal couple reunites for prom

CORNING, AR (KAIT) - A Region 8 family recently celebrated a moment they never thought they would see.

In January, we introduced you to 19-year-old Corning High School student Autumn Pollard.

When she was born Autumn was diagnosed with Noonan's Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder that affects multiple parts of her body.

Ever since then Autumn and her family have made countless trips to doctors' offices and hospitals in Little Rock, Jonesboro and Memphis for regular visits and examinations.

Les Pollard, Autumn's father, said a team of doctors work together to try to figure out why she's so small and how they can make life more comfortable for her.

"At the age of 19, her bone structure tells us that she's only 7 ½ years old and they don't understand why," Pollard said. "They want to see if there's anything they can do to make her grow appropriately, even for a child with Noonan's."

Autumn's life has been anything but "normal." But that all changed on January 26.

What she thought would be a regular pep rally at school turned out to be a big surprise.

Autumn was called to the middle of the basketball court to dance with the school mascot, as she normally does.

While she was dancing, several students made their way onto the basketball court, each holding a sign that eventually spelled "prom."

The next thing she knew, someone was tapping her on the shoulder. When she turned around she found star football player Cope Robinson holding a bouquet of purple flowers as he asked her to be his date for the prom.

Autumn was so surprised, her face became flushed as tears rolled down her cheek.

Since that day she's been anxiously awaiting prom night. The big day came on Saturday, April 18.

Autumn kicked off the day with a trip to the salon where she got the red carpet treatment.

Like any other teen girl on prom night, Autumn was a little nervous and anxious as she explained what her outfit would look like.

Once the makeover was complete, she returned home where she debuted her prom dress in front of family as they waited for Robinson to arrive.

When he did, the family anxiously ran inside to tell everyone he was there.

Robinson pulled into the driveway in a shiny red Camaro and greeted Autumn with a corsage in her favorite color, purple.

After taking a few pictures, the pair took off to the grand march in the Corning High School Gym where each couple was introduced to the crowd.

As Autumn and Cope waited for their names to be announced, Autumn nervously waved to her parents in the stands.

When the emcee announced their names, the crowd erupted in cheers.

As Autumn and Cope walked to center court to pose for pictures, her dad wiped tears from his eyes.

"It just fills my heart with joy," Les said, remembering a day nearly 2 decades ago when a cardiologist told him and his wife their daughter probably would not live to see her first birthday.

"Through the grace of the lord and a whole lot of therapy, a lot of people working with her, a lot of pain, a lot of agony on our part, 19 years later she's been asked by one of the nicest men in this school to come to a prom that I thought I'd never be able to see," he said.

Following the grand march Autumn and Cope led the first dance. Soon a crowd gathered around the couple as boys took turns dancing with Autumn.

Les said she had a ball as she danced the night away.

"She was just flat worn out," he said. "She came in and she just flopped down right in my lap, she said I'm done, Dad!"

Autumn was not the only one to enjoy the prom.

"We had forgotten how to enjoy her as a child because all we thought being a parent was doctors, specialists, pain, agony, going back and forth trying to get her living," Les said. "We had forgotten how to enjoy her and enjoy the blessing of having Autumn in our lives. To see that happen when she has to battle so hard just to survive, I can't put it in words, only God knows what that meant to me."

Les said Autumn is not only an inspiration to other children with disabilities she's also motivated him and his wife to keep pushing.

"As small as she is and then she feels huge," he said. "She feels really nice. And she feels like a special individual like everybody should feel on prom night."

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