The world needs more people like Lewis Hine
Last night a quite extraordinary thing happened.
A 16-year-old brought to fruition a long-held dream to put on a prom.
But it wasn’t just any prom, and the person who made it happen is far from an ordinary teenager.
Lewis Hine has suffered a myriad of health problems since he was a baby. At 17 months he was diagnosed as having a brain tumour. He has since had 13 brain surgeries and has often been in and out of hospital.
These are the kind of health problems that would make many give up and cry: ‘Why me?’
But Lewis has refused to let his illnesses define him and has instead opted to become an inspiration to others.
A video he put online to celebrate his 16th birthday went viral – it has so far been viewed more than 31m times. When pop royalty Elton John saw it, he was moved to tears and made a surprise phonecall to the Havant teen.
Lewis has already set up Friend Finder website, which enables young people like him, who have missed a lot of school because of their health, to find new friends.
And the event last night was an extension of that ethos. Families from across the UK came to Portsmouth Guildhall to enjoy a very special prom night for more than 300 children who had missed their own due to health problems.
We here at The News have been writing about Lewis for most of his life and it is incredible to look back at those stories and see that even from a very young age, the roots of his selflessness and desire to help others were already there.
In the video Lewis says: ‘I want to show the world it’s ok to be different.’
It seems that his efforts are not going unnoticed and the world needs more people like Lewis.