Tennessee

Middle school athlete with Down Syndrome shines on the court

Middle school athlete with Down Syndrome shines on the court

ROGERSVILLE, Tenn. - Bre Sullivan was born with a disability, but it's never been about what she can't do.

As she warms up with her middle school teammates at Clinch School, it's clear the only thing that sets her apart is that she has Down Syndrome.

Bre joined the team last season, and every time she hits the court, the crowd goes wild. The one person that's always in the stands for number 30 is her mother, LaChelle Stevens. "The crowds, they're just cheering for her, asking for her. When she makes the basket, the whole stadium is just awesome. They're clapping and hollering," Stevens says.

Bre comes off the bench, and even players from opposing teams make sure she gets her moment. "If she doesn't make the shot the first time, they hand it to her until she does," Stevens says.

But Bre's mother says it's her own teammates that make her feel most welcome, like her best friend Josie Blanckenbeckler. "We let her dribble the ball down, we hand her the ball, we pass it to her," Josie says. "She's really funny, she's sweet, she makes you laugh all the time."

Bre's mother says she couldn't be prouder of her daughter - who tries hard at everything she does. "You would be amazed what they can do. Don't ever tell them what they can't do, just help them do what they can," she says.

And it all comes to light when she scores a basket.


Most Popular