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Yes Way, Jose: Bowie H.S. Student Has Special Needs, Special Story

Updated: Saturday, August 3 2013, 09:47 PM CDT

There is a garden at Bowie High School that is dedicated to the fallen members of the Bulldog family. 19-year old Jose Velasco, Jr. deserves credit for keeping the flowers, and thus the memories, alive. But this plot is not the only story for which Jose will be remembered.

At the age of three, Velasco, Jr. was diagnosed with PPD-NOS, a form of Autism. But the challenges associated with his condition did not keep him from joining the Bowie High wrestling team.

"My four years is like a process of trial and error," admitted Jose.

Early on, it was almost all error.

"It was really painful to watch," said Deya Velasco, Jose's mother.

Jose lost every single match as a freshman. His parents and coaches thought he might be better off as the team's student-manager, rather than a competitor. In response to that proposal, Jose registered his first take down.

"I still remember it vividly," said Jose Velasco, Sr. "He said, 'you guys don't get it. I want to be a wrestler."

Velasco never missed a practice. Never made an excuse. Never was treated differently than his teammates.

"He actually puts in more work than most guys here," said Bowie High School head wrestling coach Spike Fogle.

As a sophomore, Jose finally won a match.

"It felt like I was invincible," exclaimed Jose, Jr.

"He just came and hugged his dad who was right there," said Coach Fogle.

"It was incredibly special," admitted Jose, Sr. "You see somebody being committed to something and staying true. In the end, he deserves the credit. It was only him and the mat."

That was one of just two victories that year. The following season, Jose won his first medal. This year, as a senior - albeit on the JV, Velasco placed third in the district meet.

"I especially want to thank Coach Fogle, and all of my coaches, for helping in my wrestling career," said Jose, Jr.

"He may thank me, but I thank him," shared Fogle. "I am extremely honored to have met Jose Velasco, let alone coach him."

But Jose's influence at Bowie extends well beyond the mat. Upon noticing that the school's memorial garden was wilting, Velasco chose to install a rainwater harvesting system as his Eagle Scout project.

"When he gets motivated to do something, it amazes me how dedicated he can be," said Deya.

Thanks to help from his scout troop, AISD and the City of Austin, Jose achieved his goal.

"I think he's a very courageous person with a big heart," said Jose, Sr.

"My parents say I have a learning disability, but to me it's no road block," said Jose, Jr.

Velasco cemented his legacy by providing a water source for a withering garden. But watching him bloom, despite special needs, has been the most rewarding growth at Bowie High.Yes Way, Jose: Bowie H.S. Student Has Special Needs, Special Story


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Scores & Schedules

August 29, 2014 09:13 GMT

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Detroit 3 N-Y Yankees 2

Baltimore 5 Tampa Bay 4

Cleveland 3 Chi White Sox 2

Minnesota 11 Kansas City 5, 10 Innings

Houston 4 Texas 2

L.A. Angels 4 Oakland 3, 10 Innings

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Cincinnati 7 Chi Cubs 2

San Francisco 4 Colorado 1

Atlanta 6 N-Y Mets 1

AMERICAN LEAGUE Friday's Games

Minnesota (May 0-3) at Baltimore (Mi.Gonzalez 6-7), 7:05 p.m.

N.Y. Yankees (Capuano 1-3) at Toronto (Buehrle 11-8), 7:07 p.m.

Boston (Ranaudo 2-0) at Tampa Bay (Archer 8-6), 7:10 p.m.

Cleveland (Salazar 4-6) at Kansas City (J.Vargas 10-6), 8:10 p.m.

Detroit (Verlander 11-11) at Chicago White Sox (Carroll 5-8), 8:10 p.m.

Texas (Undecided) at Houston (Oberholtzer 4-9), 8:10 p.m.

Oakland (Lester 13-8) at L.A. Angels (Weaver 14-7), 10:05 p.m.

NATIONAL LEAGUE Friday's Games

Cincinnati (Leake 10-11) at Pittsburgh (Volquez 11-7), 7:05 p.m.

Philadelphia (D.Buchanan 6-7) at N.Y. Mets (deGrom 6-6), 7:10 p.m.

Miami (Koehler 9-9) at Atlanta (E.Santana 13-7), 7:35 p.m.

Chicago Cubs (Hendricks 5-1) at St. Louis (S.Miller 8-9), 8:15 p.m.

Colorado (Bergman 1-2) at Arizona (Collmenter 9-7), 9:40 p.m.

L.A. Dodgers (Haren 11-10) at San Diego (Cashner 2-6), 10:10 p.m.

Milwaukee (W.Peralta 15-8) at San Francisco (Vogelsong 7-9), 10:15 p.m.

INTERLEAGUE

Washington (Zimmermann 9-5) at Seattle (F.Hernandez 13-4), 10:10 p.m.

NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE PRESEASON

Atlanta 24 Jacksonville 14

Detroit 23 Buffalo 0

Cincinnati 35 Indianapolis 7

Green Bay 34 Kansas City 14

Philadelphia 37 N-Y Jets 7

Miami 14 St. Louis 13

Carolina 10 Pittsburgh 0

N-Y Giants 16 New England 13

Washington 24 Tampa Bay 10

Baltimore 22 New Orleans 13

Cleveland 33 Chicago 13

Denver 27 Dallas 3

Minnesota 19 Tennessee 3

San Francisco 40 Houston 13

San Diego 12 Arizona 9

Oakland 41 Seattle 31

TOP-25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL

(21) Texas A-and-M 52 ( 9) South Carolina 28

(18) Mississippi 35 Boise State 13

(19) Arizona State 45 Weber State 14

Friday's Game

No. 8 Michigan State vs. Jacksonville State, 7:30 p.m.

Longhorn Football Scoreboard

Longhorn Football News

 

KEYE-TV Sports Team


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