Peter’s Wednesday Blog – Interview with Casper - A fourteen-year-old boy who has been through a traumatic experience gets a new family and a trip to the World of Entopia!
Hello, my awesome WOE Friends!
I have attached the latest HR Picture; Eat What Matters.
It is Wednesday, the middle part of the week for many. Me? It’s my time to share a story about someone else very special; Casper.
A few weeks ago, I was watching the opening ceremonies at the WOE State Fair. They start at 9:30 a.m. every morning and include singing with a live band and the Citizen of the Day, Hero of the Day, or the Child of the Day.
The Citizen or Hero and their family receive a three day and night vacation, all expenses paid for, including airfare. The Child of the Day is for children ages ten through nineteen that have had a traumatic experience or upbringing. They get a five day and night vacation.
I was watching Casper and his family receive their special treatment on stage and Casper got to hit the “launch” button to “wake” the State Fair up. This swoosh of lights and pyro is a great way to open the State Fair, the Center Section of the WOE Complex.
They don’t tell you why the Child of the Day was selected, because that is personal. But I wanted to congratulate him, and his mom wanted him to tell his stirring story.
I hope you find it as touching as I do!
“My mom and dad loved me very much!” Casper started off with. We were very tight as a family and did almost everything together.
We would travel to Disney and stay on property or at a less expensive hotel often. We had annual passes and were called a 'Disney Family.'
We would always joke and poke fun at each other, just to get a rise out of them. We weren’t rich, but we made do and used Disney trips as an escape.
When I was twelve, I remember my dad coming home from work and telling us that he was laid off of work. It was devastating! My mom cried on and off that whole night because my dad was the only one who brought money home.
As the days wore on, I remember hearing my mom and dad get into discussions about the money and finances.
My dad would say, ‘We can’t afford that and why did you buy something that costs so much?’
Within a few weeks and my dad not having any luck finding another job, the discussions started turning into arguments.
We canceled our planned summer vacation and didn’t go to Disney anymore.
We didn’t joke with each other as we used too, and tensions were always high.
One night, I was awoken by them arguing in the living room. I heard my dad yell, ‘How am I going to get a job with the recession?’
My mom just kept telling him to hang in there and have faith. But my dad, who was religious, would say, ‘Is faith going to pay our bills?’
I really missed the family trips to Disney and being so close as a family.
About three months after he was let go, my dad told us the bank was kicking us out of our home because we couldn’t pay the mortgage. ‘We had used up our savings.’ he said.
This place that I grew up in was soon to be someone else’s, Now, my bedroom would be used by another kid or used for something else.
We moved into a small hotel apartment that was run down and had a lot of bad people living in it. My dad was trying to earn any money he could through day labor jobs. He would come home from work exhausted and grumpy.
After one day of hard work, my dad came home with a six pack of beer.
My mom wasn’t happy at all, but couldn’t say anything, because he told her he needed to feel better about himself. This continued on each day he came home.
Sometimes, as he sat to watch TV and drink, he would make comments that could be cruel to mom or me. He would say things like, ‘Why don’t you get your butt out there and get a job, instead of laying around here all day?’ he would say to my mom.
But my mom offered to try and get a job, but he wouldn’t have it. He was too proud. ‘I make the money in this family.’
The drinking became worse over the next few weeks. He then turned to whiskey and getting even drunker. He became angry at the situation and would lash out at mom and me.
We hated it. But there was nothing we could do.
On my thirteenth birthday, I woke and went to school. When I came home, mom said she made my favorite meal; spaghetti and meatballs. Except there was no real meat and the sauce was very runny.
She told me she was sorry she couldn’t give me a really nice gift and gave me a couple of used books and this key chain of my favorite superhero.
My dad never even wished me a happy birthday and was partially drunk when he came home. He continued to drink and was pretty drunk when I went to bed. I was later woken up by him yelling at her. He was blaming her for everything. She was just crying.
Then I heard the sound I never want to hear again. I heard this slap and then my mom started to scream. When she did, he started beating her. I came running out and begged my dad to stop.
He yelled at me and told me to go back to my room, or I was next.
He continued to hit my mom. I jumped on him and started hitting him. But he was much stronger than me and threw me to the ground. He then started hitting me in the head.
Then, he collapsed down on top of me. My mom had hit him in the head with a baseball bat. He was unconscious.
We called the police and the paramedics. Unfortunately, my dad never came out of the coma and was later taken off of life support.
As time went by, my mom found someone else. His name is Pat. ‘Say hi, Pat.’
And this is my little sister, Jenny, who is eight.
Several months ago, we received notice in the mail that I was chosen to be a Child of the Day here. Today is my birthday. I am now fourteen.”
His mom then said to me, “Casper, why don’t you tell Peter what they gave you as a birthday gift?”
“Oh yeah! They gave me this envelope with our breakfast this morning. Inside was a birthday card, and there were four annual passes to Disney. I couldn’t believe it!”
Then, with tears in her eyes, Casper’s mom said, “He is my superhero.”
Thanks for reading. Until next time,