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‘Tiger-Pirate’ Parell earns bronze medal

Alissa Widman Neese • Feb 10, 2014 at 3:20 PM

This time last year, Huron High School student Max Parell was nothing less than a local celebrity.


His classmates rallied support for him as he headed to the Special Olympics Winter Games, lining the school’s main hallway with a student send-off to wish him luck.


The story attracted attention because it was about much more than skiing — it was a moving testament to the school’s kindness and acceptance.

This week, Max competed once again in the games at Brandywine Ski Resort, near Cleveland. He placed fourth in the giant slalom race and third in the downhill alpine competition, earning a bronze medal.

“It was stiff competition this year, but he still had fun, and that’s what it’s all about,” said his father, Al Parell.

Max recently transferred to Perkins High School, a tough decision prompted by North Point Educational Service Center’s educational offerings at the school for special needs students.

Al jokes that Max is a “Tiger-Pirate” now.

Huron High School students — especially close friends Grant Ferrell and Mike Huddleston — continue to support him in all his endeavors. Perkins High School students, meanwhile, have made him feel right at home, too.

“They decorated his locker and flashed his skiing pictures on the cafeteria TVs during lunch, to wish him good luck,” Al said. “They’ve been wonderful to him.”

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