Bettendorf teen gets surprise of his life

Holly Kay's son is autistic, and nobody showed up for his past birthdays

BETTENDORF, Iowa - A Quad Cities woman's request for her son went viral. It brought thousands of cards and a huge party in Bettendorf Friday night. 

Holly Kay wanted to surprise her son on his birthday by asking for just a 100 cards, but it turned into something much bigger.

"My phone just started going crazy. People were calling me that I didn't know, and I was like what is going on? And they're like you need to check Facebook. I mean, you need to look at all this stuff, because this has gone viral," Holly said. 

She got more than 3,000 cards and gifts in the mail. 

"We've gotten at least one from all 50 states, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Italy...and so many people were asking is there going to be a party?"

Holly's son, Mitchell is Autistic. She says people didn't show up to his previous birthday parties. That's why it was a suprise so many people wanted to celebrate with him. 

"We sent out invitations to the entire class, both classes, so the entire fifth grade, and nobody came... He sat on the couch and kept getting up and looking out the peep hole every couple of minutes. He would look and nobody would be there, and he'd sit down and he'd wait," Holly said. 

There was no waiting in anticipation this year. Before Mitchell even showed up to his birthday party, hundreds had already showed up to take part in the celebration. 

"When we came up in the limo, there was already 200 people here," Holly said. 

People packed inside the Bettendorf Community Center. Even Bettendorf Mayor Bob Gallagher came to wish Mitchell a happy birthday.

"It is beyond amazing, I don't even think I have emotions for it right now, It's just so overwhelming. It's so humbling. It's the most amazing thing I think I've ever experienced," Holly said after she'd shown up to the party. 

"It makes me feel really happy and it's made my day," Mitchell said. 

Mitchell thinks his 14th year is going to be a good one. 


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