Teen with autism receives more than 20,000 birthday cards after sad photo goes viral

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Credit: Hallee's 19th Birthday Facebook Page

Credit: Hallee’s 19th Birthday Facebook Page

BANGOR, Maine — A Massachusetts woman’s plea for people to send cards to her teenage cousin who has autism has resulted in a flood of more than 20,000 greetings from strangers.

Rebecca Guildford posted a picture to Facebook of her cousin, 18-year-old Hallee Sorenson, of Bangor, Maine, sitting alone in a bowling alley last year for a birthday party that she said no one attended.

“Hallee sat at her party anxiously waiting for her friends to arrive so they could have fun….but Hallee’s friends would never arrive. Not a single one,” Rebecca said.

Guildford posted on Facebook asking for people to make Sorenson’s 19th birthday memorable by sending her cards–apparently, “Hal loves getting mail.” The post was shared more than 200,000 times. Guildford says the response has been uplifting and overwhelming.

Now there’s a whole Facebook page dedicated to Hallee’s birthday, which you can find here and send messages through, as well as see messages sent by others. There’s even a White House petition to have President Obama send her well wishes for her special day! You can sign that by clicking here.

If you would like to send Hallee a birthday card, you can mail it to:
Hallee Sorenson
34 Wellesley Way
Bangor, ME 04401

Sorenson turns 19 next month. Her family is planning a private gathering.

Here’s the original message that led to the influx of love:


And Rebecca’s most recent update said that 10,000 cards arrived on Thursday alone, making the total more than 20,000 messages from all over the U.S., as well as countries like Germany, Ireland, Brazil, Mongolia, Russia, Croatia, Venezuela, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe, Italy, Pakistan and Australia!

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