WATCH: Brave teenager's video inspires Sir Elton John - and millions more
A birthday video produced by a Havant teenager has been watched by millions of people around the globe - and grabbed the attention of an international singing star.
Big-hearted schoolboy Lewis Hine, who has spent much of his childhood in and out of hospital for surgical procedures, posted the clip on the social media site to mark his 16th birthday.
Since it was published on Friday nearly 7 million people have watched the video on Lewis’ official page.
In the video he tells viewers how he was diagnosed with a brain tumour at 17 months, and had to have more than a dozen operations to stay alive.
Speaking to BBC Radio Solent this morning, Lewis said: ‘[The video] was just to show that being disabled is not a bad thing, and should not stop you wanting to do things in life.
‘We’ve had a lot of positive feedback from people all over the world saying really kind things about me about me and my project, and how much of a great person I am.’
Since he was a child Lewis has suffered regular epileptic seizures.
Lewis’ mum Emma told The News: ‘We said that we would try to get a few thousand views, but then it went viral.
‘Everyone at Lewis’ school has been so excited about it.’
And the video has attracted attention from abroad, including singer Sir Elton John, who after seeing the clip phoned up the family to talk to Lewis.
Emma said: ‘He phoned up to talk to Lewis from L.A. He said he was inspired and in tears after seeing the video.
‘He said he had to track down Lewis and tell him how amazing he was.’
In 2015 Lewis launched his own project, Friend Finder, which aims to make sure every young person has a friend.
He is currently raising funds for his first Friend Finder Prom to help people who missed their own school prom through illness or disability.
For more information go to Lewis’ Facebook page.