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Amityville High helps separated brothers share prom

Brothers Brenden Boothe, 18, left, and Dylan Boothe,

Brothers Brenden Boothe, 18, left, and Dylan Boothe, 19, both seniors at Amityville Memorial High School, at their prom at the Venetian Yacht Club in Babylon on June 22, 2017. Photo Credit: Marlo Jappen

Amityville Memorial High School senior Dylan Boothe never imagined he’d be able to attend his school’s prom because of the cost.

That all changed when one of his teachers pulled him aside during class to tell him that his ticket had been taken care of.

“What do you mean I’m going to prom?” Boothe asked his teacher in disbelief.

Boothe was one of several students who received assistance from sponsors for the June 22 prom at the Venetian Yacht Club in Babylon, senior class adviser Kelly Morenus said.

She added that the school yard sale she organized in May raised $500 toward helping students who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford the ticket.

“Between teachers offering to cover the cost of prom for individual students and the money we fundraised, we were able to allow every student who wanted to come to prom the opportunity to come,” Morenus said.

The event was particularly meaningful for Dylan, 19, because it was an opportunity for him to spend time with his 18-year-old brother, Brenden.

Although both brothers are seniors at Amityville Memorial High School, they live in separate homes.

Last year, Brenden left a group home in Riverhead to live in Wyandanch with his 25-year-old brother, Damon.

“I do a lot on my own,” Brenden said. “I buy my own deodorant and toothpaste and I cook for myself.”

Dylan lives in Amityville with a classmate’s family who learned about his situation through their church. They also helped pay for his prom attire.

He and Brenden have been separated at different times from a young age, due in part to custody issues.

After graduation, Dylan plans to study heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration at Suffolk County Community College, while Brenden says he will enter the workforce and then possibly join the military later down the line.

Over the next few years, he hopes to earn enough money so all his siblings -- including brother Tyler, 16, and sister Olivia, 14 -- can live in the same house.

“I want all of us to be together in the same spot,” Dylan said. “We haven’t all woken up to each other in so long.”

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