Maddie and Jon and the Prom


 Source of Photo: Mike Larson

In April 2013, a photograph originally posted on Facebook went viral. The photograph showed two high school students from Wisconsin: Maddie and Jon. Maddie had met and liked Jon, and she had asked him to the prom. He accepted. Jon’s father, Mike Larson, posted the photograph and this text: “This is my son Jon with his prom date Maddie. He is a junior and he has autism. About a month ago, Maddie, a senior, came to my office (I’m a teacher at their school) and asked if Jon’s mom and I would allow her to take him to prom. Maddie had gotten to know Jon through a school club that promotes friendships between special needs kids and regular kids. ‘He’s a junior,’ she explained[,] ‘so it’s his prom too. I just think he should have the chance to go.’ I told her we would be honored to have him go with her. During the next couple weeks, she asked what his favorite color was (orange) so she could get a dress in that color. She also made reservations for their group (they doubled with another couple) at a restaurant that served his favorite food — chicken fingers and French fries.” Jon’s father encouraged people to post the photo for a number of reasons, including this one: “To remind us all, in a time when we hear about all the terrible things going on, that there are wonderful kids like Maddie working to make other [people]’s lives better.”

For Further Information: Christine Wolf, “Snapshot Of Love: Maddie And Jon Go To The Prom.” 29 April 2013

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