Green For Brandon
STUDENTS REMEMBER CLASSMATE
FARMINGTON — Third-graders at Williams Elementary School in Farmington wore green clothes and released green balloons in remembrance of a classmate who died just before school started in August.
Brandon Pollard was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at birth and was part of Dana Partain’s special education class. March is National Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month and the class decided March would be a good time to honor their friend and also help bring attention to those who live with the condition.
Brandon passed away Aug. 12, 2015.
In addition to the balloon release, students gave Brandon’s mother, Amber Pollard, a special book of pictures they had drawn. Teachers presented Amber Pollard with a book that talked about going to heaven. Children also gave her several banners decorated with their handprints.
Amber Pollard said her son loved life, loved his friends and loved to be outside. He was just a “happy, happy child,” Pollard said. Her son had a stroke while in the uterus and he was born with half of his brain missing, Pollard said.
“He just went to sleep and didn’t wake up,” she said.
Kara Gardenhire, school principal, said Brandon brought joy to all those around him.
“He made us all stronger,” Gardenhire said. “He would greet you with a smile.”
Partain said her special education class wanted to do something for Brandon. She noted that the Farmington community has a number of students and adults affected by cerebral palsy.
According to United Cerebral Palsy, cerebral palsy is a broad term used to describe a problem with movement and posture due to damage or abnormalities in the brain that make certain activities difficult. It is the most common motor disorder and the second-most common disability found in children.
Cerebral palsy affects body movement, muscle control, muscle coordination, muscle tone, reflex, posture and balance. It can also impact fine motor skills, gross motor skills and oral motor functioning.
United Cerebral Palsy uses the month of March to encourage people with cerebral palsy to share the many things they are able to enjoy and do, while living with their disabilities.
The organization sponsors a website on the disability and points out, “People with cerebral palsy have a range of interests and disabilities, and in that respect are no different than anyone else.”
For more information on cerebral palsy, go to ucp.org.
Brandon Pollard passed away in August 2015. He would have been a third-grader at Williams Elementary School in Farmington.
Students at Williams Elementary School release green balloons in memory of their classmate Brandon Pollard, who passed away in August from cerebral palsy. He would have been in third grade.