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Autistic Beauty Queen
Batavia, N.Y. - As an eighth grader Holley Yarton of Geneseo has the same struggles as her peers - but along with that she is autistic.
Yarton was diagnosed with high functioning autism, as well as attention deficit disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, and anxiety almost five years ago.
But Saturday she conquered her fears and anxiety and got up on stage in a beauty pageant.
To prove no matter what obstacles are in front of her she can still achieve her goals.
I don't like the idea of 100s of people seeing me, said Holley Yarton before she went on stage Saturday at Batavia High School for the 2014 Miss Teen Rochester Pageant.
Yarton made it clear she wasnt getting on stage for herself.
I have autism and a lot of people with autism can't speak but they can still follow their dreams even though they can't speak, said Yarton.
Wearing the familiar autism awareness puzzle pieces on her shirt in casual wear, Yarton wanted others to know about her and the disease shes diagnosed.
Its amazing, she's so smart and she does want to speak for those [who cant], she's so caring she wants to give, said Yartons mom Angela Pollock. She just wants other people to feel like everybody else.
I want to be accepted, said Yarton.
And on this day she was.
That is the best part of this whole thing, said Pollock, she's talking to friends, people are saying oh wow you look nice and for her that's new. I'm watching her blossom in front of my eyes, it's great.
At the end of the pageant Yarton didn't walk out with a crown but rather with a hug from her mom, an accomplishment and a plan for her new dress.
Mainly my goal is to win and go to Disney World, said Yatron, and if I lose I can use my formal dress to go trick or treating in and my mom will give me a tiara.
Yarton said she doesn't plan on competing in another pageant.
However, she hopes her time in this one helped people become more accepting of those with autism.