Cleveland family planning to raise money for trip to help son with autism

Tracy and son, CJ. Photo by WTVC

A Cleveland family is asking for help with their upcoming family trip.

Stacey and William Bearfield's non-verbal autistic son CJ, had a chance to recently meet his favorite Disney character, Mickey Mouse.

In the video his father recorded, it shows him laughing, smiling, and dancing.

All emotions his mother, Stacy, says the 12-year-old does not show very often.

"You hardly ever hear him have a really good belly laugh." says Stacy

Stacy and her husband adopted CJ when he was just 4 years old.

She says he came from a neglectful and abusive household, and said she did not know if she was legally allowed to say just how bad the conditions CJ was living in were.

As he got older Dr.'s eventually diagnosed him with non-verbal autism..but at the time of adoption she says no one knew he had special needs. Stacy says he has the body of a 12 almost 13-year-old, but has the mindset of a three year old.

"When he came into DCS custody...they did not know he was special needs due to the situation that um.. (pauses).. I don't know that I'm legally allowed to say on air, but you can look his court case up in the state of Tennessee." says Stacy.

Stacy says he came from a home where he was severely neglected, she and her husband knew they wanted to give him the best life possible.

Since learning about his diagnosis, his mother says it's been a family effort taking care of him. They bought him a specialized bed that keeps him from getting out of the house at night, but also makes him feel safe, a chair that "hugs" him pressing in on both sides, and a hired a C.N.A. that works 40/hrs a week Monday-Friday, so that they both can work.

"He had such a rough start in life the rest of his life will be the best I can make it". says Stacy.

When his parents saw how happy the meeting with Mickey Mouse made CJ, his mother says she knew it was time to plan a trip to Disney World.

CJ has a very short attention span, so what's cool right now might not be cool here in the next few months. While mickey is fresh we're trying our best to get him to Disney world." says Stacy.

She says they are willing to do whatever it takes to get him there, even if that means selling baked goods or taking out a personal loan.

"If I have to bake cookies and sell them in my yard, you will see me outside with a sign saying "buy baked cookies"" says Stacy.

With hopes to see him laugh and smile the same way he did in the video of he and Mickey Mouse.

"There's not a lot of emotion, so when we get it it's worth every minute of it." says Stacy.

To help CJ and his family here is the Go-Fund-Me link, click here.


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