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In the emergency room of Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, Michigan, Pam Warfle begged for compassion.

Her autistic son had COVID-19 and needed to be hospitalized, though the staff informed her she couldn’t stay.

“‘You don’t understand. You’re going to have to carry me out of here. He cannot communicate,'” Warfle recalled telling the doctors and nurses as she pleaded to stay. ” ‘You can put me in bubble wrap. I’ll stay in a corner.’ “

But the hospital wouldn’t bend: “We cannot do it,” they said.

In that moment, her 21-year-old son Jonathan, who has always lived with his parents and attends life skills classes, became her hero.

“He looked at me and said, ‘Mom, It’ll be OK,’ ” Warfle recalled. “I told him,