CMS sends student, family to Kansas City for 2023 NFL Draft

·2 min read

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools are giving a South Mecklenburg High School student with special needs and his family the trip of a lifetime.

A surprise celebration was held Thursday morning at the school to send Robert Short and his family to Kansas City for the 2023 NFL Draft. South Meck student leaders and part of Dream on 3′s Jr. Dream Team surprised Short with the news and a limo ride to the airport.

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Short has Down syndrome, which can sometimes make it hard to connect with other students around him. Short is a massive football fan and loves to put his family to the test with NFL trivia. He wants to be a sportscaster one day so he can share his knowledge with fans.

Through a partnership between Dream on 3 and the NFL, Short will walk the NFL Draft’s red carpet and go on stage to introduce a pick for the Tennessee Titans on Day 3 of the draft.

Channel 9′s Gina Esposito was there as Short and his family was given the celebrity treatment. To make the surprise even better, an NFL player called Short to tell him he was going to the draft.

“He loves football. If you tell him a jersey number, he likes to tell you what football player had the number, the team he played for, possibly the other teams they played for, and what college they went to,” Laura Short, Robert’s mother, told Channel 9.

David Short, Robert’s father, told Esposito that he and his family were looking forward to Short’s response to getting to pick for the Titans on day 3 of the draft.

“It’s going to be a mix of emotions – because we don’t know how he’ll react. He’s either going to be a huge ham or he’s going to be a little overwhelmed” David Short said.

According to Dream on 3, it was the students from South Meck that made Short’s dream a reality. The nonprofit says the students raised more than $15,000 to send their classmates to this year’s draft.

“I hope he gets an experience that he never forgets,” said Walker Plyn, a student from South Meck.

When asked how he feel about his surprise, Short was excited and thankful to the people who made it possible.

“They’re amazing, they have my back,” Short said.

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