Tylar Merriner plays football for James Wood High School. (Photo by Ginger Perry/The Winchester Star)
ABOVE: Febra Christensen signs to Tylar Merriner, 16, at the conclusion of a James Wood High School football practice. He has an interpreter with him during the school day, at practice and on the sidelines during games.
RIGHT: Tylar catches a pass during a recent practice. To communicate with his teammates he sends and receives text messages on his phone. His coaches have devised a wristband for him to wear during games, with images of hand signals that correspond to passing route patterns. (Photo by Ginger Perry/The Winchester Star)
WINCHESTER — Like most moms, Sonya DeHaven was a little hesitant when her son told her he wanted to try out for the high school football team.
Standing just 5-foot-8 and weighing in at 125 pounds,...