PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — It was a night that 13 Meeting Street students won’t soon forget.
The Meeting Street prom was held at Roger Williams Park for students who attend The Carter School, which serves students with special needs up to the age of 22.
“I’ve never had a better night than a Meeting Street prom,” Special Education teacher Kerrin Martins said.
The Carter School is a private high school that serves students with special needs up to the age of 22. Kiyana Disomito and Demetrius Rivera, who are both non-verbal, are among those students. The couple met at the beginning of this school year.
“I started seeing lots of eyes getting made across the classroom, and flirting, and then some hand-holding along the way,” Martins recalled with a smile.
Martins and the other staff at Meeting Street thought it would be great if the two went to prom together.
When they asked Demetrius if he wanted to go to prom with Kiyana, he didn’t hesitate to show his excitement at the idea.
“I put two hands up and said, ‘Would you want to ask Kiyana to the prom?’ He lit up, was so excited, and immediately moved his eyes to yes,” Head School Nurse Christa DiSano said.
Then, staff at Meeting Street crafted a plan for Demetrius to ask Kiyana to the prom – involving music, posters and balloons.
Two weeks later, he popped the question.
“We all kind of lined up as soon as Kiyana walked into the room,” DiSano said.
“The excitement and the hearts melting were innumerable,” Martins said.
That excitement grew when Party Dress Express in Fall River decided to donate a prom dress to Kiyana.
“She tried on five or six fancy dresses,” Martins said. “Got the full treatment from head to toe.”
Kiyana eventually picked the perfect dress – sparkly, shiny, and fit for a princess.
“It’s overwhelming. This is what every mom wants for their kid, right? To be part of the community, to enjoy themselves,” Sandra Rivera, Demetrius’ mother, said. “We already feel so left out from the world when you have a child with special needs. This is like a dream come true.”
“This is a dream come true,” Madelena Diosomito, Kiyana’s mother, said. “We always wanted Kiyana to be apart of the community… apart of the world.”