The family of a young man excited for his 21st birthday has launched a social media appeal asking strangers to send him birthday wishes.
James Weir, from Bolton, has autism, which makes regular social interaction difficult for him. His family says it breaks their hearts.
In a Facebook post, Lucy Weir made a heartfelt appeal to friends to send birthday wishes to her younger brother for his big day.
“This is James. My not-so-baby brother and he is turning 21 on the 30th November,” she wrote.
“James has Autism and this makes it difficult for him to make friends and socialise. He gets anxious in social situations and finds it hard to communicate effectively with others. Sadly, James has no friends and it breaks our hearts.
“So, I have come up with an idea/surprise for his birthday. I wondered if you kind folk out there will share this post and send James a birthday message or card. Even if he only got a few I know he’d be over the moon!”
She added, “I want to make his milestone birthday extra special and put a big smile on that handsome face. Thank you everybody. Feel free to share.”
Lucy posted her plea on Monday, Oct. 23, after which it spread far and wide.
“I’m dropping James’ card in the post today,” read one comment from James Stuhlmacher, “It might take a bit to get there from the United States.”
Lucy told the Mirror Online, “He’s had so many stars named after him, gift vouchers, clothing.
“People are so kind it makes me emotional.”
James loves dinosaurs, the Titanic, and astronomy. But he could not follow his dream of studying astronomy because of his condition, which upset him and his family, the Manchester Evening News said.
Lucy explained to the news outlet why she decided to launch the appeal.
“I’ve decided to do this because he’s my little brother and it breaks my heart everyday the fact he has no friends and that’s what he wants so much; along with a girlfriend! He is a very lonely individual because he has no friends, which is really sad.
“He will be over the moon with all this attention, I can see him smiling for days. Especially being in a local newspaper as he’s always wanted to do something to go viral!”
Lucy has created a Facebook page called James Weir is 21 where people can post their birthday wishes online.
For anyone who would like to send him a card in the post, his sister provided the following address:
c/o Waring and Co
People can also send James birthday wishes via email to firstname.lastname@example.org