The Lookout

Middle school wrestler lets boy with cerebral palsy win match

The Lookout

Justin Kievit, a middle-school wrestler from Tennessee, showed off his sportsmanship when he matched up against Jared Stevens, who has cerebral palsy.

The match, which was taped and posted to Facebook by Kievit's father and to YouTube by Stevens' dad, begins with Stevens being gently laid down on the wrestling mat by a coach. Once the match begins, Kievit maneuvers around Stevens in a low crouch. Kievit then gets down on the mat and slides underneath Stevens so Stevens can pin him. The crowd went wild for Stevens' win and Kievit's heart.

According to Kievit's father, the act wasn't planned. The proud dad remarked to Franklin Home Page: "The first time he met Jared was when he shook hands with him before the match. So it really was spontaneous. They just picked this kid. If you watch the video, he just did an amazing job. There's not many adults comfortable putting hands on a disabled kid, much less another 13-year-old."

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This was Jared's first wresting match. "I think a lot of people are scared to put kids like me on the mat, but they don't need to be," Jared told his local paper. Jared's father explained that while his son has roughly the physical capacity of a six-month-old, he is close to his age level intellectually.

"Jared just likes to do stuff like everybody else," his father told the Franklin Home Page. "There's a limit to what he can do, but something like wrestling, he can do that as much as he can do. He just enjoys being out there participating. He doesn't mind trying anything."

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