Education

Tattoo Artist Helps Bullied Boy By Transforming His Back Brace

by Tod Perry

November 3, 2017
Image via Facebook.

For most middle schoolers, there’s nothing more important than fitting in. It’s not that conformity is cool, but kids who are a little different are almost always singled out and subject to bullying. Recently, a 12-year-old boy named Xavier in Orlando, Florida, was heartbroken to learn he’d have to wear a back brace until he stops growing to correct his scoliosis and pectus. He tried to hide the cumbersome hunk of plastic beneath his clothes, but it was too uncomfortable. So Xavier wore the brace outside of his clothing, making him a target for bullies. 

Image via Facebook.

Upset that her son was being singled out at school, Xavier’s mother, Ashley King, reached out to her friends on Facebook to see if there was anyone who could help.

“Okay FB , I just left the Orthopedic Dr. , And Xavier is going to have to wear this back brace longer then expected. He has scoliosis and Pectus, this is suppose to help him straighten out in his growing years. He’s embarrassed to wear this to school. Last year he wore it under his shirt but it’s very noticeable , and got picked on. I’m looking for a place that can possibly do a airbrush design on this in Orlando . Please share this help him out. Thanks !!”

After her post, King was put in touch with “Evil” Anjel, a local tattoo artist at Anarchy Tattoos & Art Co. Anjel proved he wasn’t so evil after all by using his amazing artistic talents to airbrush a cool design on Xavier’s back brace. Now, instead of going to school wearing an unfashionable chunk of white plastic, Xavier had a menacing great white shark on his chest.

Image via Facebook.

“I’m so touched I just had to share this positive story,” King wrote on Facebook. “My son has scoliosis and has to wear a back brace until he stops growing. He was getting teased at school, so I put something on Facebook to see if I can make his back brace ‘cool.’ A man named Anjel reached out to me, and he airbrush a design onto his back brace, at no charge. It might not seem like a big deal, but to my son, it’s everything!”

This isn’t the first time Anjel has helped out a member his community. After the tragic mass shooting at nearby Pulse nightclub in June 2016, Anjel and his team gave away free “Pulse” tattoos to help the community heal. 

Update: This article originally appeared on ​September 12, 2016.

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