BALTIMORE (WJZ)—The Kennedy Krieger Institute is marking a milestone anniversary Wednesday. For 75 years it’s been serving children with disabilities.

Mary Bubala reports many came to say thank you.

Betty Lou Driver is one of the first patients to be treated at Kennedy Krieger Institute in the late 1930s.

She came back Wednesday to show gratitude for how the institute helped her move forward in life and she used humor.

“Don’t tell anybody but I am No. 1,” Driver said with a laugh.

Kennedy Krieger opened in 1937 and Wednesday they celebrated the institute’s mission: to be a place where doctors, nurses, educators, researchers and therapists focus on children and the potential they have inside.

Peter Waldron’s son has autism. He knows firsthand the power of Kennedy Krieger.

“For us, we were able to have Frankie’s autism detected at 18 months, which is incredibly young. We were able to get in and implement an early intervention program which has helped him make tremendous strides,” Waldron said.

And Matt Courson says Kennedy Krieger had hope when no one else believed he would walk again. After intense therapy at the institute, he did at his college graduation from UMBC.

“This place has done so much for me. The therapists, the doctors, the marketing team, it’s just a collective family and they are family to me and I definitely hold a special place for Kennedy Krieger in my heart,” Courson said.

Kennedy Krieger serves more than 16,000 children and adults every year.

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