DOWNERS GROVE, Ill. (CBS) — Gov. Pat Quinn has honored a Downers Grove high school for its inspirational choice for a homecoming queen.
Annie Wagner, as her friends call her, was beaming throughout the school rally Tuesday, as Governor Quinn declared it “Downers Grove North High School Day.”
“We have got to make sure this day is never forgotten and your school and what you did in the year of 2013 is never forgotten,” said Quinn.
It is because the students selected Annie, who had Down syndrome and battled leukemia, to be their homecoming queen. Annie’s mother Amy was moved by what the students did.
“It’s a memory that we’re going to treasure forever,” she said. “So many students have learned from these kids about unconditional friendship, innocence and self-acceptance. I would love to see that others would follow their example.”
Annie’s friend Mary Doro went further.
“We gave her something that every little girl dreams of, but who says we have to stop here? We can continue to be inspired by Annie. Why not move forward from here and do good in other areas?” said Doro.
Doro is the one who pushed for Anne to be homecoming queen after watching her friend go through such an ordeal and started a Facebook page to build support.
“I was trying to think of somebody who actually deserved it. and her name popped in my mind and I couldn’t think of a more perfect person,” said Doro.
Anne had several grueling rounds of chemotherapy last year for the leukemia ,and missed a lot of school. Her parents say this was a wonderful welcome back to school.
“These students at Downers Grove North are exceptional and rare. My bible teaches me that we are to love one another, and this act of friendship was truly faith in action. Thank you,” Amy told the school at the rally.