A boy with autism whose friends ditched his 10th birthday party had “the best day ever” when a bunch of strangers threw him a last-minute celebration.
Brody Barron has an August birthday, but having recently moved from the U.K. to Guthrie, Okla., he postponed festivities until school started, so he could celebrate with his new classmates.
The boy invited 10 children to his Fortnite-themed party at the entertainment venue Main Event in Oklahoma City and, according to his mother, Susan, “counted down the days” until the big day, Sept. 29.
“We weren’t expecting everyone to show up, but 30 minutes after the party was supposed to start, we knew no one was coming,” Susan tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “I told Brody, ‘Let’s figure out what to do, because I don’t know if your friends are going to make it.'”
Since Brody’s autism makes it difficult for him to understand social cues, he replied, “That’s OK, I don’t mind waiting.”
“That broke my heart,” says Susan. “I told him, ‘I don’t think they’re coming.’ His entire body deflated and he hung his head. I was crying.”
Having already paid a $100 deposit for the $300 event, which included decorations, food, and a table for 10, Susan consulted the manager. “He said, ‘This is what we’ll do. We’re going to give him an amazing party, and the cost for you is zero.'”
The Main Event staff gathered around Brody and sang “Happy Birthday,” signed a card, participated in a game of laser tag, and gave him the gift of a bowling pin with the Fortnite logo. One customer booking a reservation on the phone overheard the background noise, and when she learned that Brody’s birthday party didn’t go as planned, drove to the Main Event with a gift bag for the tween.
A representative of Main Event tells Yahoo Lifestyle, “Brody touched all of us.”
“Brody felt like a celebrity and called it the best day ever,” says Susan. “He said, ‘Everyone missed out.'”
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