While it had been seven years since 16-year-old Arek Trenholm last stood on his own, when the American flag passed by him, not standing for it was not an option.
According to Fox 35 News, Arek has spina bifida, which is a congenital condition which impacts the development of the backbone and spinal cord. Before Arek was even born, the family knew he had spina bifida, according to his uncle, Myron Leggett.
Leggett is a photographer in Leesburg, Florida, and he witnessed the incredible moment that Arek and his little brother watched the local high school’s homecoming parade by his shop. “Here come the junior ROTC, marching along and chanting, and I heard … ‘He’s standing!’ and I knew what he was standing for, in an instant,'” said Leggett. “I whipped around real quick with the camera and just started snapping pictures of him.”
Leggett captured the moment that Arek used his arms to stand since he can’t do it with his legs. Leggett was so proud of Arek saying, “He’s making that effort, where so many … that have legs, that could stand, are sitting or kneeling,” said Leggett, “and not using their ‘well legs’ to stand and respect those who have fought and died for our flag and for our country.”
When Fox 35 News asked Arek why he decided to stand when the American flag passed by, he said, “I didn’t want to be disrespectful.”
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[Featured Image Credit: Fox 35 News]