Young Adult Stories

Kirsten Schultz: A Path to Independence

For 14 years, Shultz lived with systemic JIA without seeing a doctor. Now she is in charge of her life and health care – and has found a passion for helping others with chronic illness.

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Ana Villafañe: Her Time To Shine

The singer/actress started singing at juvenile arthritis camp. Now she’s starring in a major summer movie – and soon on Broadway.

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Ryan Conner: Harnessing Creative Fire for Patient Advocacy

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Jake Anderson: Pediatric Rheumatologist in the Making

Anderson has set his sights on improving treatment options for children with arthritis.

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Samantha Bell: Bringing Empathy and Mindfulness to Medicine

Living with JA sparked a passion for empathy in patient care.

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Carolina Mejia Peña: Mastering the Language of Arthritis

Diagnosed with JIA at age 4, bilingual Mejia Peña had to learn the language of independence and responsibility as she managed her disease.

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Lauren Lingle: Enjoying a Full Life

Lingle gives back to the arthritis community by helping other young adults with the disease.

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Brett Ishihara: Battling AS on the Court and Off

Ishihara gives it his all on the tennis court and gives back as a mentor for teens with arthritis.

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Jen Horonjeff: A Body in Motion

Horonjeff celebrated getting her PhD with a tandem bike ride from NY to FL raising awareness for JA.

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Liz Morasso: Flying High

Since being diagnosed as a teen, this social worker has always aimed high. Most recently? Skydiving!

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Margo Deihl: Music is Medicine

Deihl’s love of music fuels her fight with juvenile arthritis and her dreams of becoming a doctor.

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Elizabeth Wertenberger: Former Miss Michigan Turns Her Arthritis Story into a Message of Hope

“Without my chronic illness, I wouldn’t have found my passion for life.”

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Todd Peck: Arthritis Has NASCAR Driver Revved Up

Peck is committed to raising awareness and reaching out to others dealing with juvenile arthritis.

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