(BUCKEYE, Ariz.) — When it comes to roaring, the Verrado High School cheerleaders are hard to match.
The Buckeye, Ariz., school’s entry into the Good Morning America/Katy Perry “Roar” contest is making waves on the Internet, in part because of one special cheerleader.
Megan Squire, 17, has Down syndrome. Despite her condition, the high school senior chased her dream of becoming a cheerleader.
Her mother, Kimberly Squire, told GMA that she carefully explained to her daughter what cheer would entail, telling her: “You don’t walk on this cheer team. You work, you work hard, you do the jumps, you do the cheers…and she rocked it.”
When Perry put out a call for high schools students to submit their own rendition of her hit song for a chance to win a special performance from her, Verrado High School student Clayton Mueller decided to share his fellow student’s story with the world.
While his friend, Philip Hoang, manned the camera, Mueller wrote and directed his school’s very own “Roar” video, with Megan Squire as its star.
She was thrilled.
“I was super excited when Clay wanted me to be in the video,” she said.
The video went viral and made headlines. Mueller described the public’s response as “just a chain reaction of how this one simple girl can spark a revolution in ideas and thoughts and things people can do.”
Tom Huffman, the school’s principal, described himself as “a proud dad right now because we’ve worked so hard at this school to build this culture of openness and caring.”
His students hope their story has what it takes to bring Katy Perry to their school. Their entry has made it to the contest finals.
“I think she should come here because we worked really hard on this video,” Squire said.
Her mother agreed, adding: “What these kids have created with her ‘Roar’ music video, I don’t think anybody can touch it.”
Perry and GMA will pick the winning video and broadcast the concert live on GMA on Oct. 25 — which also happens to be Perry’s 29th birthday.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Lindsey Williams, Deseret News
Mike Moran, EastIdahoNews.com