TAMPA, Fla. – Justin Scott has a slogan: “It’s okay not to be okay.”
The Wharton High School elder knows both sides of that refrain. As a child he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Some doctors said he would never walk or talk; others said he would never live past two.
“Every day I prove them wrong,” said the 18-year-old.
This is where the “okay” part comes in.
By being defiant, brave, funny and upbeat, Scott has become an inspirational star on the Tampa school campus.
He was the king of prom and the star of football on Senior Night. He gets screams from every other child who walks the corridors. They recognize and draw strength from those who have never given up.
Scott is also a star on Tiktok. He has garnered more than 30,000 followers by being a force of positivity and light, delivering daily affirmations for all of us.
A recent post? “Heaven tells us that there is no limit to our dreams and goals”.
Her mother Michelle Smith said her sheer willpower showed up not long after she ran out of diapers.
“He is the light of my life, a joy to be around and the most inspiring guy you ever wanted to meet.”
Along the way, he garnered numerous accolades from the Tampa Bay community, including the Anne Frank Humanitarian Award from the Florida Holocaust Museum and the Jan Henrick Achievement Award.
Georgie Collins, Wharton ESE specialist, gets excited when she thinks about saying goodbye to her friend. But she also knows that the sky is the limit for this young man.
“He will do great things and now the world will see him.”