Progeria is an unusual genetic disease wherein aging begins to take place at a much earlier age. The rate is around one per eight million live births. Here are some famous people with progeria who did not let their disease control their lives.
Born on June 4 1985, Leon Botha was a South African DJ and painter and is one of the famous people with progeria. Botha died on June 5, 2011 from complications related to progeria. Although he was just in his mid-20s, he’s believed to be among the longest survivors of the disease. He was diagnosed with the condition when he was 4, but in spite of the devastating condition that caused him to suffer a heart attack in year 2005, he remained positive in his entire life.
Hayley is a teenager with progeria from England who has captured the hearts of many people from various parts of the world. She appeared in several stories and documentaries about Progeria and won the Children of Courage Award. Like most young teens, Hayley is infatuated with pop star Justin Bieber, going shopping and messaging her friends. She suffers from hip problems, baldness and arthritis and wishes to have long shiny hair. When she was featured in a documentary series for Five in year 2010, she was beginning secondary school as well as participating in a new medical trial in America.
Life According to Sam, an HBO documentary, also featured children who are suffering from progeria. Many families have made beautiful social media accounts and websites devoted to their kids, providing an insight into their everyday lives as well as their dreams and hopes for a cure. Some of the kids who were featured in the documentary are:
1. Zach Pickard
Zach Pickard together with his family is PRF’s Ambassador family. He was diagnosed with the condition in 2007 and his family as well as their friends immediately took action, speaking with the media, organizing PRF’s Kentucky chapter and holding fundraisers. Zach appeared with Kyle Wyman, a motorcycle champion, and Erica Enders, NHRA Champion, in a Public Service Announcement. His contagious smile and energy will brighten the day.
Nicknamed Buddy since his little sister could not pronounce brother, Josiah’s love of baseball has captured the attention of many sports enthusiasts from various parts of the world. He was featured in a segment of ESPN’s E:60 in 2010. Josiah has inspired a lot of people with his courage including his favorite player, Philadelphia Phillies’ Ryan Howard. In 2011, he was picked by ABC as Person of the Week and continues to move many people because he did not allow his condition to stop him. According to his mom Jennifer, he was placed here to touch the lives of other people.
Kaylee’s friends and family started the Ohio Chapter of PRF in 2006. They have had great success with Kaylee’s Course, its signature event. Kaylee is quite the local personality and an extremely busy girl with cheerleading, softball, karate, jazz and tap dance being a few of her favorite activities. You can keep up with her by joining her Facebook Group.