Teen with cerebral palsy gets birthday surprise

BUFORD, Ga. -- Brandon Sudge is getting a new service dog, Mojo, from Canine Assistants. He's also about to get so much more than that.

WATCH | Sudge and Mojo meet for the first time

Sudge, who just turned 16, was nominated for a random act of kindness by Lacrecia Smith, his second grade teacher.

"Of all the students I've taught, of all the years I've taught, Brandon just left a special impression on me," Smith said. "He will always have a special place in my heart."

Sudge was born with cerebral palsy and has spent his life in a wheelchair, but that hasn't stopped him from doing the things he wants to do.

"I'm trying to go to college on my own and live my life like everybody else would," he said.

Smart and determined, Sudge wants what every 16-year-old boy wants: to drive. But for that to happen, his parents' van would have to undergo some costly changes, including adding hand controls and something to lift the teen's wheelchair into the vehicle.

Just getting around at home isn't easy for Sudge; his wheelchair doesn't fit through all the doorways. That's when he uses a cane and his mom's help, but like other teenagers, he wants some independence.

"I'm working to get more and more independent every day," he said.

Sudge's first surprise is from Elanco -- free monthly flea and tick treatments for Mojo, for life.

But there's more to come for a very special boy, for his birthday -- and for never giving up.

WATCH | Brandon gets his birthday surprises

Friday morning, a crew of people descended on the Sudge house in Buford, where the teen was getting ready for school. 11Alive's Jaye Watson presented Sudge with several birthday presents -- tickets to an Atlanta Braves game, a gift certificate to the Hard Rock Cafe and a stay at a Marriott hotel in Downtown Atlanta.

A representative from McCarthy Building Companies was also on hand to give Sudge a big surprise. The company promised to widen the doors in his house, allowing him to access every room in his wheelchair.

But the biggest shock was yet to come. The party moved to the garage, where R & R Mobility told Sudge it will install hand controls in the family van, which will help make his dream of driving come true.

WATCH | Brandon gets the 'key' to his independence

Do you know someone who deserves a random act of kindness? Nominate that person here.


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