Aaron and Seamus

Every once in a while, a person comes into your life and leaves a lasting impression.

For our son Aaron, Seamus Neary is that person.

Aaron and Seamus were matched up officially in the Best Buddies program at Dr. Martin LeBoldus High School in Regina, Saskatchewan, at the beginning of this school year. But their relationship started long before that. Aaron loves the game of football and, for the past few years, has been the high school team’s assistant manager / honorary coach / motivational speaker – call it what you may. During the football season, he’s around the guys, day-in and day-out, giving encouragement, putting smiles on their faces and helping out wherever he can. For him, for us, for the coaches, for the guys – he’s just part of the team!

Although the entire team is great with Aaron, Seamus has been the one who developed a special bond with Aaron, from the moment they met. Before we even knew who Seamus was, Aaron and Seamus were hanging out at school, making plans for after school and chatting on the phone. What we love about their friendship is it started without any suggestion or involvement from outside people. It happened naturally and honestly, a wish every parent has for their child, special needs or not.

At the start of this year, when the Best Buddies group was doing their pairings for the year, Seamus and a few other football players were first in line to sign up. It was only natural that Seamus and Aaron be paired up. Since then, they’ve had great times together, taking part in the more organized activities planned through the Best Buddies Chapter at LeBoldus. Away from school, there has been many informal social times, just hanging out together on their own or with a group of guys, playing PS3 or watching football games, or just chatting on the phone. There’s been Grey Cup parties, Super Bowl parties, football team gatherings, and a Telemiracle trip to Saskatoon on their own.

Best Buddies has truly been an avenue for their friendship to grow, and as parents, we are very, very thankful for the opportunities it has created for Aaron and Seamus, as well as other peers. Even though Seamus graduates this year, and will likely carry on to university in another city, we are confident that their friendship will continue. A friendship like theirs does not end because of circumstances changing around them…

Aaron’s parents – Rose and Doug Higgins

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