Clark County School District is dedicated to accommodating athletes with special needs. One of those athletes, a wrestler, is inspiring others while dealing with two obstacles.
Ceasar Hernandez, a freshman wrestler at Liberty High School, faces challenges his teammates do not. He's deaf and has autism. What he doesn't do is let those things hold him back.
"He performs at a very high level for his disability. He qualified fourth at the Junior Varsity Zone, and that's a tough tournament. That's the biggest in the state," said Ceasar's coach, Billy Love.
Even though this is Ceasar's first year on the mat, Love said he's been a valuable asset to the team. Before joining, Ceasar's teammates regarded him as withdrawn. Lately, they've witnessed him grow, both as an athlete and a person.
"It's done a lot for him because he really doesn't communicate with anyone all day long, but when it comes to wrestling, you see him smile once in a while and he's just enjoying himself," said Ceasar's father, Sergio Hernandez.
Sergio Hernandez attends all of Ceasar's practices and matches. He's thankful for the opportunity to see his son compete.
"I think it helps him a lot when they give him a chance to be part of something with other kids, to get involved like a normal kid," Sergio Hernandez said.
Ceasar has been given this chance thanks to the school district's commitment to the U.S. Department of Education's mandate concerning students with disabilities.
With the help of an interpreter and the support of his teammates, Ceasar is determined not to be pinned and make the varsity team next year.
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