Quaden Bayles had the "best day of his life" on Saturday, just days after a video of the 9-year-old Australian boy saying he wanted to take his own life after being bullied at school went vial. Quaden was invited to lead the National Rugby League's Indigenous All-Star team onto the field before the game in Queensland. As he brought the team out onto the field the crowd roared.
Quaden walked to the field holding All-Stars captain Joel Thompson's hand and the match ball, reports NBC News. He wore noise cancelling headphones as the crowd cheered.
Quaden's story went vial on Tuesday, after his mother Yarraka Bayles shared a Facebook Live video showing him crying after being bullied at school. The boy, who was born with achondroplasia, a form of dwarfism, could be head saying "I wish I could stab myself in the heart." Bayles shared the video to show what bullying can do, and the clip quickly earned millions of views and celebrities around the wold showed support for Quaeden.
On Wednesday, the Indigenous All-Stars team invited Quaeden to walk out onto the field with them in a video shared on Twitter.
"Just want to wish you all the best, brother. We know you're going through a hard time right now but the boys are here, we got your back, we're here to support you, bud. And we just want to make sure that you're doing alright," South Sydney Rabbitohs star Latrell Mitchell told Quaden in the video. "Your mum's on your side, we're on your side and [we want to] make sure you're thinking the right things, bud, because we want you around."
"We want you to lead us out on the weekend," Mitchell added. "It's gonna mean more to us than it will to you, bud. So just make sure you're looking after yourself and hopefully we get to see you in the next couple of days."
On Friday, Quaden and his mother met the players, who Bayles referred to as his "uncles." Bayles said Friday the fast journey from crying in the video to being invited to the All-Star game was like "going from the worst day of his life to the best day of his life."0comments
"One of the vehicles in Aboriginal communities is rugby league. This game's very important within those communities," Cody Walker, the star player for Quaden's favorite team, the Rabbitohs, told repoters Friday. "So what better way than to get Quaden down here on the GC, be a part of our team, lead us out like the young warrior he is and show him that we love him, that the broader community love him and he's doing a wonderful job in standing up [to] this type of behaviour."
Unfortunately, Bayles has been forced to turn her Instagram and Facebook pages private since Quaden's story made headlines. A rumor that Quaden was really 18 circulated on social media, but it has since been debunked.