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Students cheer on fellow classmate

Published: Oct. 29, 2021 at 10:45 PM CDT
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OSCEOLA, Ark. (KAIT) - A typical Friday afternoon for Osceola High School students turned into an electrifying moment for one ninth-grader with Autism.

Antavion Cotton was working on his basketball shooting skills with a few friends, Jeffery Hall and Amarah Thomas, during a lunch period.

“He started shooting and running for the rebound and I just decided to go get the rebound for so he wouldn’t have to run as much,” Hall said.

Cotton’s shooting drills eventually caught the attention of a group of students, and they begin to encourage him as he takes each shot and misses.

“They were cheering for me in the gym,” Cotton said.

Cotton eventually makes the shot and the crowd rushes to the gym floor in excitement.

Dean of Students Alan Teague said he witnessed the victory firsthand and was astounded by the reaction of the students.

“All eyes were on him,” Teague said. “It was like he was having his own basketball show.”

Osceola High School Assistant Principal Dettris Poole said she was overwhelmed with emotion as she watched the camera.

“It was just beautiful,” Poole said. “That’s what you come to work for.”

Cotton mentioned for the first time he felt special.

“First, I thought, I wasn’t good at anything, but they actually made me feel I was,” he said.

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