Dozens of students at Viera High School celebrated the 17th birthday of a Taylor Swift super fan, who happens to have cerebral palsy.
Amanda Gibson's mother said the teen knows every word to every song. She started wearing Taylor Swift shirts on December 13, 2012 and plans to continue wearing them through December this year Local 6's news partner Florida Today reports.Tayl
“She’s given me a place where I can go and feel like somebody can understand stuff that I don’t even tell my friends,” Amanda said.
“And the thing is, whenever I have to tell somebody something that’s really hard, I go back to Taylor because I know there’s always a lyric or something that can help me say it better than I could on my own.”
Laurie Gibson explained Amanda's 16th birthday wasn't fun. They had just moved to Viera from Seminole County. Though Laurie surprised her with cupcakes at school, Amanda was all alone in the cafeteria.
"The look on her face was not that of a birthday girl," Laurie said.
This year is different.
Amanda tried out for the cheerleading squad. Though she is wheelchair-bound, she made the team. The other members rallied to celebrate her 17th. When they learned about her love of Taylor Swift, they created the Twitter hashtag #Amandagetswift. The trend caught on, garnering attention from across the country.
On Wednesday, dozens of students wore red in honor of Amanda and her wheelchair was festooned with balloons. The cheerleaders gathered after school, squealing and cheering as an Orlando radio station presented Amanda with gifts they arranged to get from Taylor herself — perfume, an phone case, an autographed photo.
Ashley Figueroa of the AJ and Ashley show on K92.3 shed a tear as she and her co-host gave Amanda the gifts.
"The whole school and people across the us have backed her up,” Figueroa said. "When something like that happens it’s hard not to get emotional."
"It's amazing," Amanda said of the experience.
"To be able to say: 'I got Swift,' it's amazing."