Grafton, Ohio – Last moth we covered the story about the intelligent and energetic 16-year-old, Michael Whary, who created a 13 minute autism awareness video for his Eagle Scout Project. Michael has autism. You can read our report; Boy scout with autism makes autism awareness video here. here.
To date the YouTube video has had 24,695 views.
Below is Michael’s video, which we think is pretty amazing.
We got in touch with Michael and his mother Judi, to learn more about Michael and how the viral reaction to his video has impacted upon their lives. Below is our interview with Judi.
Can you tell me a little about the early years with Michael and when he was diagnosed? Did you know or have a feeling that Michael was on the autism spectrum?
Where we live it is illegal not to educate your child so legally the schools in our district were our main option with his education. We are very fortunate to have a good and understanding school district that are true advocates of education. He was issued an Individualized Education Program (IEP). Michael received speech therapy and occupational therapy through Midview Local School District. We gave him private speech therapy and music therapy too. It was not covered by our insurance and the burden of payment fell to us. Michael has known of his Autism since third grade. He has been involved with all the decision making on therapy, treatment and medication. This helps him feel in control of his own life.
I think it was in third grade when he was finally able to tell me what he “did that day”. I remember him not saying it, but singing it and ‘backwards’ starting with what he just did and working up to the morning activities. I was smiling from ear to ear with excitement. Sometimes I think “We are the only parents who love it when our children talk back to us!”