- Associated Press - Monday, November 7, 2016

OLATHE, Kan. (AP) - A Kansas boy found emaciated in the attic of his mother’s home in 2010 has been reunited with the Johnson County authorities who rescued him.

The now 13-year-old boy helped the four officers who rescued him host an anti-bullying program on Saturday. The teen, who has Down syndrome, was all smiles when presented with a plaque designating him an honorary deputy sheriff, the Kansas City Star (https://j.mp/2fqILFI ) reported.

He even got his own badge number, matching the number that Sgt. John Klingele wore on his badge the night he found the boy.

“Wow, that little boy has come a long way,” said Capt. Mark Rokusek, who also was at the scene six years ago. “It’s so comforting to know he’s in a loving home.”

The then-6-year-old boy was discovered severely malnourished and covered with feces and urine in August 2010, after a relative expressed concern about the child. The boy’s mother, who had hidden him in the attic, was later was later sentenced to eight years in prison for attempted second-degree murder, child abuse and aggravated child endangerment.

The boy was later adopted, and with the love of his new family, counselors and educators, and a local wrestling team, he built a new life.

The boy’s adoptive mother, Stacy Eastwood, said her son worked the room like a celebrity at the Johnson County sheriff’s training center on Saturday. More than 30 children ranging in age from 5 to 12 attended the anti-bullying program.

She also noted that the sixth grader has an appetite that just won’t quit.

“It gives me hope that good things happen to good people in this world,” Rokusek said.

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Information from: The Kansas City Star, https://www.kcstar.com


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