A Pennsylvania high school senior and football star who was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when he was 4 years old was crowned his school’s homecoming king earlier this month.
Almost immediately after he was named Dover Area High School homecoming king, Shad Murphy passed the crown on to someone that he thought deserved the title more -- Michael Wolfgang, an upbeat, friendly classmate who has Down syndrome, WPMT reported.
"I don't know exactly what he's going through, and he doesn't know what I'm going through, but struggle has just been there for both of us," Murphy told WPMT. "All I had to do was hand him the crown, which he deserved. … That changed my life. I'll never forget that moment, and I'm sure he won't either."
Murphy and other students told WPMT that Wolfgang has an uncanny ability to cheer people up. He brings coffee for teachers in the morning. He always has a smile on his face.
Dover High School junior Grace Beierschmitt caught the moment when Murphy crowned Wolfgang on her cellphone.
"Everyone had tears in their eyes, and it was just a really sweet moment to watch," Beierschmitt told WPMT. “With all the bad things that have been happening in the world, this was really like a light in the darkness."
A few days after Murphy crowned Wolfgang, he said he was surprised to find a card left for him with his homeroom teacher.
"I opened it up and it says 'I'm so happy that if I were a monster created by a mad scientist, I'd be Thankenstein.' And then on the inside, it says 'Thank you, Shad, for the best day ever. Your best friend forever, Michael,'" Murphy told WPMT. "And that just changed my day. I wasn't having a bad day, but I was definitely having a better one since I got that."