Blake and his brother Shane were born at only 24 weeks

By Alex Heigl
Updated November 17, 2015 03:00 PM
Credit: Courtesy Wings for Autism

Fourteen-year-old twin brothers Blake Deaton and Shane were born at just 24 weeks. They weighed 1.4 and 1.9 pounds, respectively, and were given a 50 percent survival rate.

Both of them survived, though not without complications. Shane developed blindness and was also diagnosed with autism. So when Blake was trying to come up with a project to achieve his Eagle Scout rank (the highest rank in Boy Scouting), he looked to his brother for inspiration.

Blake decided to construct a sensory room – a special room for children with autism that generally features special lighting, padded floors and walls and therapeutic toys – for children at Morehead Middle School.

The project arrived with a hefty price tag. So Deaton launched a fundraiser Saturday at a local airfield, offering $25 airplane rides and a variety of baked goods and other treats to drum up cash. And the ambitious teen’s efforts paid off – Blake raised $20,000 towards his project.

“This is truly beautiful, amazing and inspirational.” Savanna Hersh, Shane’s special needs teacher at Morehead Middle School, told Carolina Coast Online. “It drives my inspiration for these students.”

“We have a great turnout,” Blake added. “More people than I expected showed up. The whole project is larger than I expected it to be.”

You can find out more information about Blake’s project at the Facebook page, Wings for Autism: Giving God’s Special Angels Wings.