Lupus Gains Worldwide Awareness at the Olympics

Two Olympic athletes deserve the gold medal for creating awareness of lupus at the 2012 Olympics. U.S. women’s soccer player Shannon Boxx was interviewed by USA Today about her determination and success as a women’s soccer star despite her ongoing struggle with lupus. Her story is upbeat despite her struggles; Shannon told USA Today reporter Janice Lloyd, "I want people to see I'm playing through this and to encourage them to stay active. I never want to use the disease as an excuse."

The New York Times looked at another Olympian touched by lupus. U.S. gymnast John Orozco from the Bronx is getting to compete in London after years of sacrifice by his mom and dad. Encouraging his interest in gymnastics from a young age, John’s mom Damaris, drove him every day 45 minutes each way to a gym that would give them a discounted rate – not easy given her struggle with lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. Now, without jobs or health insurance, it is still difficult for his parents to make ends meet, John told New York Times sports reporter Juliet Macur.

“When I’m in the gym, sometimes I do think of all the things my mom and dad are going through, health-wise, and that helps me push through a routine when I’m not feeling my best,” he said. “That’s what pretty much keeps me going.”