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Update: Dallas freshman with HIV doesn't win Champion award


BACKGROUND: Brianna Lamar, 14, a freshman at Skyline High School in Dallas, was born HIV-positive and has successfully struggled to maintain a normal life. In addition to staying healthy, her mission is to educate people about HIV and how to avoid becoming infected. Children's Medical Center Dallas nominated Brianna for the 2011 Champion Award from the Children's Miracle Network, a nationwide consortium of hospitals that specialize in pediatric care. The Champion program recognizes a special child from each state and Washington, D.C., for courage while facing severe medical problems. Each Champion becomes an ambassador for the Children's Miracle Network, traveling to Washington to tell their stories to government officials and making a special trip to Disney World in Orlando, Fla.

WHAT'S NEW: Brianna was not chosen as the 2011 Champion for Texas. The Children's Miracle Network announced Tuesday that the Texas representative will be Dustin Strelsky, 13, of Rockdale in southeast Texas. Dustin is recovering from a severe spinal cord injury suffered during a car wreck last January. Children's Hospital at Scott & White in Temple nominated him.

WHAT'S NEXT: Brianna said she's disappointed that Children's Miracle Network did not select her, but she will continue to tell her story and educate people about HIV. "It's been so forbidden to talk about, but someone has to say how not to get infected," she said. "There are things you can do to prevent getting HIV, but only if you know about it."


Copyright © 2010 to The Dallas Morning News. All articles are republished on AEGiS with permission of The Dallas Morning News. You need permission from the Dallas Morning News to make more than one copy of any article in this section.

Information in this article was accurate in December 22, 2010. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.