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Special Olympics athlete shines bright on court

Posted at 8:05 PM, Mar 11, 2016

“If he had a girlfriend, that would be his girlfriend,” said Steven Carr, Naeem Carr’s dad.  “Yes, I mean seriously.  It's about that serious with him.”

If he could, Naeem would play basketball 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  He's been playing since he was two years old.  His mom, Rebecca, and dad were basketball players.  Now they watch their son play on Morse-Marshalls Special Olympics team.

“He never lets the obstacle get in the way,” Steven explained.  “He finds a way around it.  He does whatever he can to adjust in it.  And whatever he can do, he tries to flourish in it."

Naeem was diagnosed with autism around three years old.

“It's like being thrown in the depth of hell to some degree,” his dad described.  “And he follows his way all the way out and has become like a star, a shining light.”

Shining bright are his hard work and perseverance.

“It's the best sport,” Naeem said.

At 19 years old he is shy, but get him talking about basketball and you quickly learn that, “shooting” is his favorite.  And there's one shot in particular he loves, “shooting three pointers,” he said with a smile.

Naeem is a patient player who always wants the ball, and when he gets it, he will shoot, and shoot, and shoot until it finally goes in.  His team will celebrate and fans will take notice, but as for Naeem, he quietly goes home looking forward to the next game.