The Ottumwa Courier

Southeast Iowa

March 17, 2014

One special prom date


Knoxville —

"And he hasn't stopped talking since," Dennis jokes. Wesley has attended school, has vast knowledge of computers and participates in the KHS Band.

"These are all his achievements," Dennis said. "We've just been there to guide him." Both are very complimentary of the Knoxville School District and Wesley's teachers. Though Wesley has found success and growth at school, neither of his grandparents expected him to go to prom.

"I was shocked," Jackie said. "Shocked and delighted at the same time. I never thought it was going to happen, but I didn't cry."

"At least not yet," Dennis added. 

Wesley describes himself as shy, but he knew he wanted to take Jessica to prom. He believes he will become more shy as the dance gets closer. 

"She was just all smiles when he asked her," Sharon said of Jessica. Sharon received a text message from one of the teacher's aides at school to let her know the date had been made.

"I cried," Sharon said. When Jessica got home that day, she was able to tell her father, who lives in Chariton, about the date over the phone, using her Dynovox. 

Jessica's ability to make her own choices and to enjoy music help lead Sharon to believe that she will enjoy prom. Sharon has already taken her shopping for a prom dress. Jessica showed her interest, or lack thereof, in a dress by smiling or just turning her head away. When she put on a pink, sparkly dress with matching ruffles on, Jessica was all smiles.

"I guess this is the dress," Sharon said. "I think she's going to be very excited about it." 

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