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Boy dashes first-day-of-school jitters by consoling boy with autism

One Wichita boy's act of kindness toward a child with autism is capturing the hearts of strangers everywhere.

For Christian Moore, it seemed like a no-brainer to help out his classmate who was having a tough time on the first day of school.

The 8-year-old from Wichita, Kansas, noticed his peer, Conner Crites, crying in a corner last week as they prepared to enter the school.

Instead of ignoring him, Christian took his hand and walked him towards Minneha Core Knowledge Elementary; the end result is a heartwarming photo, and a simple lesson for everyone to be more kind.

READ MORE: GO Transit drivers asked to spit out gum to accommodate man with autism

“I saw him on the ground with Conner, as Conner was crying in the corner and he was consoling him,” mom to Christian, Courtney Moore, told KAKE-TV.

“He grabs his hand and walks him to the front door. We waited until the bell rang and he walked him inside the school,” she shared. “The rest is history. They have an inseparable bond.”

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Moore shared the photo on Facebook. In it, her son can be seen smiling and holding onto the boy’s hand as he cries.

“I’m so proud of my son,” Moore captioned the photo. “He seen a kid balled up into a corner crying [sic], so he went to console him, grabbed his hand and walked him inside of the school! It is an honor to raise such a loving, compassionate child! He’s a kid with a Big heart, the first day of school started off right.”

READ MORE: Autism, explained: What’s the spectrum and how it develops

The photo has since been shared more than 20,000 times, and has garnered nearly 6,000 comments and 21,000 reactions. It’s clear this pure moment has had an impact on everyone — including that little boy’s mom.

His mom, April Crites, was moved by the moment, too. She shared Moore’s post to her own Facebook page, writing: “This made me sad but also absolutely warmed my heart. I’m so happy a caring little boy was so kind to my baby.”

According to KWCH 12, Crites also commented on the original post.

“Tell your son I said thank you so very much! That little boy he helped is my son and is autistic,” she wrote. “I worry everyday that he is going to get bullied for being different and your son just absolutely warmed my heart. If there were more children like him I wouldn’t worry about such things.”

“I cried. I first wondered where his [paraprofessional aide] was but it also warmed my heart that a simple gesture from Christian made Conner’s day one hundred times better, so much so that he came home and didn’t even tell me what had happened that morning,” she told Global News.
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“It means the world to me and his father,” she continued. “We don’t get out of the house very often because it is just easier to stay in his comfort zone so him finding a friend that he gets along with so well is overwhelming.

“Conner is not always open to people in his space and playing with him but he opened up to Christian immediately.”

For Conner, the act of kindness was simple, he told KAKE-TV.

“He found me and held my hand and I got happy tears.”

meaghan.wray@globalnews.ca