A teen boy wanted nothing more than to attend his school dance. Unfortunately, he was turned down by every girl he asked. But, on the night of the dance, a date showed up. His mom walked outside, and that’s when she saw what was in the driveway.
Daniel Rivas, a 17-year-old Arizona boy with Down Syndrome, is just like other kids his age, with the same dreams and desires of most teens. He hopes to eventually go to college and become a chef. But, until then, he wanted to enjoy his high school functions, and that included attending his homecoming dance with a date. Unfortunately, he was turned down by every girl he asked.
After asking several girls to be his date and being turned down each and every time, word of Daniel’s dilemma got back to 10th grader Kylie Fronius. Hearing Daniel was turned down, Kylie decided she should step up and knew right away she wanted to surprise her classmate. So, she asked Daniel to be her date one day at school. Of course, Daniel was delighted by Kylie’s homecoming proposal.
“Someone took the time to take my son to homecoming,” said Tonya Rivas, Daniel’s mother, as her voice cracked with emotion. “Words can’t even describe what I’m feeling right now,” she added, stunned by Kylie’s kind gesture. “It’s not that Daniel has a disability. It’s Kylie didn’t see any disability. That is what your heart wants as a mom.”
Little did Daniel and his mom know, though, the unexpected surprises were just beginning for the young boy after Kylie’s sweet proposal hit social media and drew the attention of the local news. “I don’t think of kids that have a disability,” Kylie told Fox 5 KVVU-TV. “I don’t think of them as being different,” she added. “I hope I can make his night fun.” And, the news crew was about to make her hopes come true.
Fox 5’s Surprise Squad, which is locally known for recognizing people who do good things in the community by rewarding them with big surprises, decided the positive attention Kylie and Daniel had received wasn’t enough. They too wanted to be part of Daniel and Kylie’s big night, helping make it even more special.
Impressed with Kylie’s compassion, they wanted to go big, and as they say, when the Suprise Squad goes big, they go big. Indeed, Kylie’s simple act of kindness had inspired a night full of surprises that no one would forget, beginning with a Rolls Royce rolling up to take the pair on their date.
After the Surprise Squad sent the luxury ride to pick up the high schoolers, they were whisked off for a fancy dinner at Bistro 57 in the Aliante Casino before being taken to the homecoming dance, where they continued to receive the red carpet treatment. The emotional night included a lot of crying, but they were tears of joy as the surprises kept coming.
The Surprise Squad finished off the evening by ensuring more memories would be made, letting everyone know they were sending Kylie, Daniel, and their families to Disneyland. And, wanting to make sure the rest of Daniel’s dreams continued coming true, he was given a $10,000 scholarship from United Nissan in Las Vegas, who also surprised Kylie with a car.
“All you had to do was watch the [original] news story that aired, and you saw a young lady with a huge heart, and she was inspirational,” Don Forman, the owner of United Nissan, said, revealing his motivation for making both Kylie and Daniel’s dreams come true. Indeed, it often takes just one simple yet kind gesture to create a snowball effect as others become motivated and inspired to also be generous and kind.
Although Kylie Fronius didn’t ask Daniel Rivas to homecoming to be rewarded or noticed, good deeds tend to have that result. You might not get a visit from the Surprise Squad, but you will get to witness another person’s happiness — and, as Kylie proved, joy and kindness are both quite contagious. Isn’t that reward enough to just be nice? After all, it doesn’t cost us anything to spread a little love, and the result is priceless, both for the person receiving it and the one showing it.