Cherokee Trail senior with special needs recognized in ‘Mr. CT’ spirit competition

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AURORA, Colo. — Since freshman year, a group of upperclassmen at Cherokee Trail High School in Aurora has been dreaming of a title recognizing school spirit.

It’s not Homecoming King, MVP or valedictorian; it’s “Mr. CT.”

“Just try to show everyone that being in high school is more than just going to football games and school; it’s a lot more,” said senior Kobe Sconiers.

As part of the competition, the boys are asked to participate in a talent contest.

Sconiers did what he explains as a “Ted Talk” about race. His message: that our differences can be used as a way to connect. His friend Ben Gilardeino took a different route for the talent competition: freestyle rapping.

“I’m very popular here at Cherokee Trail. During 9th grade and 10th grade, I was telling jokes. And 11th grade until now, I just like to freestyle rap,” said Gilardeino.

Gilardeino said he has special needs.

In his rap, came a message.

“I really want to leave a legacy to be yourself,” Gilardeino said.

Gilardeino says after his rap, the crowd of 450 went wild.

But that wasn’t the biggest applause. While in the end, Sconiers was awarded the title of “Mr. CT,” he told the crowd, “As much as I embody school spirit, I think there’s someone here that outdoes us all… and that’s Ben.”

Ben now wears his title proudly… still wearing his T-shirt from the competition to this day.

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