SC Teen USA becomes first disabled person to win pageant

Photo from GoFundMe

An Upstate teen born with a rare disease, is making history on the runway.

When 17-year-old Nila Morton was 10 years old, she was diagnosed with a rare form of muscular dystrophy.

So rare, that only 96 people in the whole world have it.

Even though it limits her mobility, she never let it get in the way of chasing her dreams, and last month, she was awarded Miss Mauldin Teen USA.

“I applied, and I wrote my little essay explaining to them why I should be in this pageant, and then they called me like two days later and they said I could be Miss Mauldin Teen USA.”

Now, Nila wants to enter the Miss South Carolina Teen USA pageant in November, but needs help raising money to make the trip.

She says the entry fee alone is $1,200, but she’s not going to let that get in her way.

“You can always chase your dreams because that’s what I’m doing. I’m in this wheelchair, I’ve been told I was going to die multiple times and I’m here now.”

“To hear that your child might not come out of the hospital, that is something no parent wants to hear. But I refused, refused to accept it,” says Christie Hentz, Nila’s mother.

Christie says, she couldn’t be more proud of her daughter.

“My daughter gets a chance to be on a platform and show everyone that ‘hey, I’m in this wheelchair, I was born with this disease, but that doesn’t define who I am and I’m beautiful.’”

With some help from donations, Nila will be able to take the stage, not just for herself, but as an inspiration to every woman everywhere.

“This wheelchair didn’t stop me from getting on that stage and so, it just makes me feel good, so if I’m helping somebody, even if it’s one girl, then I’m satisfied.”

You can send Nila to the state pageant in Charleston this November by donating on her GoFundMe page.

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