Hayley Okines, who suffered from an illness that caused her to age eight times faster than average — and who became famous for both raising awareness for her condition as well as her unfailingly positive outlook on life — has died at the age of 17. Her mother Kerry made the announcement on her Facebook page.
Okines, who lived in East Sussex, a county in South East England, became known as the “100-year-old teenager” because she suffered from a rapid aging condition called Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome, or more commonly known as simply Progeria. Doctors state that her body was the equivalent age of a 100 when she was only 14. She was considered extraordinary to have lived that long, and spoke about having Progeria in the TV documentary The Girl Who Is Older Than Her Mother and World’s Oldest Teenager: Extraordinary People. She soon became the public face — and a positive role model — for people with Progeria.
The Progeria Research Foundation posted on Facebook: “The entire Progeria family mourns together with many as we say goodbye to Hayley Okines, our smart, beautiful and spirited English rose, who passed away today at age 17.
According to the Huffington Post UK, Hayley had been recently suffering from pneumonia, but was able to return home from hospital before her death to be with her family.
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