This Guy Dressed As Iron Man Attends A Charity For Kids With Disabilities Every Year. His Story Is Beautiful

April 21, 2015

Every year, he attends "Teen-Tastic Fishing Derby for Downs Syndrome" dressed as Iron Man.

This is his story...

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Yes, the armor was handmade by me. It was my second year doing it, and I've started to get things figured out, kind of.

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87 degrees and sunny - perfect weather for being in a silver bodysuit covered in armor.

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He asked if he could fly with me...

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This was the best I could do.

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He wanted to do the claw instead. I went with it.

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The hosts... Every year, they donate the use of their farm so that we can spend money on prizes and games for the kids instead.

I didn't know there was a dog there 'til it barked.

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He just wanted to share with me. Sometimes the generosity of people blows me away.

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I told him he should keep them, and he gave me this flower instead.

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He said I was his hero, and asked his mom if it was okay to shake my hand.

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Unabashed joy is one of my favorite things in the world to see. After we took this photo, he hugged me for at least a full minute. Feels good, man.

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Adorable bear hug, with adorably disproportionate strength. It was a death grip, seriously.

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I get asked occasionally why I do things like this, and if it's worth it.

It is worth it. But the reason I do it is a little complicated. It's true I'm a total ham, but I do it because I get how hard it can be for families to be caretakers as well.

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That's my brother, in the chair in front. I don't have a picture from this year's, because he passed away three weeks before this all took place.

I agreed to do it months ago, and if it weren't for the fact that I knew it would disappoint the kids if I hadn't shown up, I wouldn't have. But I'm very glad I did.

Christopher: 1991-2014.

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All I wanted to say was that sometimes, a little fantasy can make all the difference for people, whose lives are filled with many hard realities. I got into costuming to escape, and sometimes I can help other people escape too. We all need a breather sometimes, a little bit of air, and pretend, before we can shoulder it again. Parents need it. Siblings need it, and someday, children might need it too.


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So don't listen, please, to people who say things like "useless fantasy." That means they probably never needed it, and I'm glad for them that they don't, because that also means their lives are pretty good. But they don't understand, and frankly, we don't need them to.

We can change the world ourselves, for the better, using what we love to help those who we love. Us, with our ridiculous outfits and hobbies and obsessions, can do a kind of good that serious and practical people can't.

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So please, do something with what you do.

Credit: IWasSurprisedToo

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