Dawson Stephens got a “happy moment” for Christmas.
He pulls for the Atlanta Falcons and Matt Ryan. Stephens can cite every stat. He’s also become a big Georgia Bulldogs fan.
“Dawson is a 16-year-old autistic kid,” his uncle Glenn Oliver said. “Phenomenal kid to be around. Every time I’m around him — it doesn’t matter what type of mood I am in — he always lifts my spirits. I am always smiling around him.”
Stephens boarded a flight in Atlanta this morning, surrounded by friends and loved ones. Just like a lot of DawgNation.
Destination: Los Angeles.
‘Tis the football season for that.
The Griffin, Ga., resident attended his first Georgia game this season when the Bulldogs met South Carolina. Oliver was nervous about how 93,000 screaming fans might affect Dawson.
Especially the week after that 42-7 takedown of those Florida Gators.
In retrospect, those seem like the worries Larry Munson used to have on game days.
Nervous is not the way Stephens lives. Every day is an adventure.
“The kid took to it like a duck to water,” Oliver said of the teen’s experience that day at Sanford Stadium. “He loved it. We took him to see the arch. He got his picture taken. We ate downtown at The Grill. He got to ring the chapel bell after the victory.”
It won’t be his last UGA game of the year, thanks to friends and family. The three layers of the puzzle in the video below will capture that “happy moment” for Stevens and everyone who loves him.
Stephens solved a puzzle on Christmas Day to figure out his ultimate gift: tickets to the Rose Bowl.
His family created a Facebook page to chronicle his adventures. Look for pictures of Dawson along his latest one in Pasadena.
“We just want to show everybody that just because people are special needs doesn’t mean they can’t do stuff like normal people,” his sister, Rachel Hubbard, said. “They just have their own way of doing it.”