Eastport-South Manor Junior Senior High School students Anthony Elliot and...

Eastport-South Manor Junior Senior High School students Anthony Elliot and Deanna Boylan stop for a picture on Tuesday, June 7, 2016, before the start of their school's 2016 senior prom. Credit: Ian J. Stark

Deanna Boylan's and Anthony Elliott's prom journey was largely the typical teen experience, starting with the prom-posal. 

She asked him while they were in class, and while it didn't contain some of the pomp and circumstance of some of the outlandish invites found on YouTube, it was no less appreciated.  

“I wasn’t expecting it," he said. ". . . It made me very happy, and I was excited.”

The pair is part of the Eastport-South Manor school district’s program for students who are differently abled.

He has Down syndrome; her classification is multiple disabilities.

Their parents brought them to the prom Tuesday night at Carlyle on the Green in Farmingdale. But that was the only difference between them and the other attendees.

Anthony wore a soft lime green bow tie to match his date’s dress, and it was hard to miss Deanna's smile flashing as they enjoyed bites during the cocktail hour, and later took part in the hearty dinner buffet.

“I’m looking forward to the food, and the soda,” Anthony said before digging in, prompting a surprised laugh from Deanna.

They started dancing almost as soon as the DJ fired up the tunes. Strobe lights flared, the speakers boomed, and Anthony, Deanna and all the Eastport South Manor students on the dance floor moved to the beat.

It was hard to ignore that some of the biggest smiles were found on the other students, when noticing that Deanna and Anthony were having a blast.

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