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Mom's mission to replace her daughter with autism's favorite shirt goes viral

When a girl's favorite pink shirt got frayed, her mom turned to the internet for help.
/ Source: TODAY

Who says the internet is full of meanies and trolls?

Not this Utah mom, who turned to social media to find a replacement for her daughter's favorite shirt — and got dozens in response.

"My count is up to 178," Deborah Skouson told TODAY about the number of shirts she was expecting.

She's already received about 50 in the mail. "We got one on Friday from Germany!"

In a plea on Facebook earlier this month, she explained that her 10-year-old daughter, Cami, who has autism, has been "fixated" on one particular pink flower shirt for years.

The shirt, sold five years ago by Target, is no longer made, said Skouson, and she couldn't find others like it anywhere.

"She got her first one in kindergarten five years ago, and we have found four more since then, mostly on eBay," Skouson wrote on Facebook. "Her current one is almost unwearable, and eBay has gone dry."

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Her friends jumped in to help, promising to hunt down the shirts for Cami.

Skouson's request went viral after it was shared by an Oakland, California, news anchor, KTVU's Frank Somerville.

It has since been shared nearly 40,000 times, reaching people across the globe who opened their hearts — and wardrobe.

Skouson, who has four other children and is a special education teacher, said her family was shocked by all the support.

"Apparently this struck a chord in people," she said. "It's been beautiful to see. The kindness that has been offered to us is overwhelming."

Target even got in touch and offered to make some of the shirts in adult sizes, so Cami can wear them when she's older, Skouson said.

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As for Cami, she's thrilled to be able to wear her favorite shirt again.

"I don't know how much she understands, but when she first saw multiples of the shirt, she was a little confused, because she's only ever had one at a time," Skouson said.

"She likes to pick up each one of them, and she rubs them against her face and smells them, and just gets a big smile on her face."