Girl with autism surprised with prom queen crown

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — This is 18-year-old Molly Bell.

“Everyday at lunch, you can see people sitting around Molly and just accepting her into our community and I think that’s just another thing that’s special about Manitou Springs High School,” said long time friend and senior at Manitou Springs High School, Oliver Bell.

“She’s not in a clique, she’s not a cheerleader, she doesn’t play a sport,” said Jill McCracken, a special education teacher at Manitou Springs High School.

During prom Saturday night, Molly took over the dance floor, but she gained a new title.

“I think it was a really great way for them to honor her and who she is,” McCracken said.

Molly took the crown for prom queen of Manitou Springs High School.

“I think what they are doing is acknowledging how hard she works every single day at the little things in life,” said Kathy Bell, Molly’s mother.

Like communicating. Molly has autism and is non-verbal. To help her express herself, she uses a special tool.

“Our high school I feel like, is very diverse. Especially in the way we think and how we choose to represent people,” Oliver said, who was also voted prom king.

“This wasn’t adult prompted or teacher led by any means. We were all more surprised I think than anyone else and that the students themselves came independently and acknowledged her and recognized her as someone special. I just thought it was a beautiful thing,” McCracken said.

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