King and Queen of what matters.
This isn’t a brand new story, however the message is timeless. Homecoming queens and kings are generally the popular and the beautiful; this pair is even better than that.
The two are Bubba Hunter and Semone Adkins, two students at West Orange High School in Winter Garden, Florida; both with Down’s Syndrome. The two, who have known each other since they were six, were elected independently of each other, yet the long-time friends ended up back together
The moment was especially sweet for the mothers of the pair. Bubba was born prematurely at 23 weeks, and Semone’s birth nearly killed her mother, who had been advised to abort her.
“I was supposed to have an abortion with her,’’ McNeil said. “I would have had to have had a partial abortion because I was so far along in the pregnancy, and the doctor wouldn’t do it. I thank God he did not let me be able to have that abortion. That’s why it was such a big deal for me when Semone won because she really wasn’t supposed to be here.”
McNeil also overcame complications during Semone’s birth that nearly killed her.
“When she came out, I was scared to look at her,’’ McNeil said. “I wasn’t educated about Down syndrome, but then I heard the doctor say, ‘She is beautiful.’ From that point on, I started hemorrhaging and almost died, but I promised God that if he let me live, I would love her and take care of her forever. When I said that, that’s when my blood pressure started coming back up.”
Bubba was born prematurely at 23 weeks old and weighed less than three pounds. His mother, Janice Morgan, could not bring him home for nearly another two months while he was kept in a neonatal intensive care unit.(1)
Maybe there is hope for the leaders of tomorrow when there is a body of students who look past the shiny trappings of external beauty, and dig a little deeper to the things that matter most in the long run.