Bridgeport man honored for work as disability advocate

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BRIDGEPORT -

A Bridgeport man with autism received a special honor Sunday for his work as a disability advocate, prompting a video call from football legend Jerry Rice.

Charles Fuller, who has autism, leads a walk every year to build awareness about that cause. He has also gained attention for the poetry he writes about the importance of helping people who are seeking to overcome challenges.

Fuller was honored Sunday in Bridgeport by Mayor Joe Ganim who proclaimed March 25 as Charles Fuller Day in the city of Bridgeport.

In a video message from Dallas, football legend Jerry Rice also commended Fuller on his achievements. Rice first learned about Fuller in 2015 when he saw a News 12 Connecticut story about his work as a disability advocate.  The two men have stayed in touch ever since, and Rice says he shares Fuller's story when he's on the road as a way of inspiring audiences.      

Fuller says he never set out to gain personal attention, but to help other people with special needs, and he's glad he's making a difference.

"You can do anything if you put your mind to it, you know I'm the living proof of it, and never, ever give up,” he says.

Fuller says he receives regular calls and care packages from Rice who checks in with him just to make sure he's okay.

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