Family Advocacy Day Hero -- Meet Zion T.
Zion T., Age 13
Hometown: Summerville, SC
Hospital: Children’s Hospital Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC
Zion became known as “The Mayor” when he introduced himself to all the neighbors in his new community. He loves to play football and soccer and enjoys being outdoors with his peers pursuing any physical activity he can find time for before curfew. One would never guess that behind Zion's jovial smile and athleticism is a young man living with sickle cell anemia, a disorder where the red blood cells are shaped like sickles (crescents), making it harder for the red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body.
Throughout his life Zion has endured numerous surgeries, undergone countless medical procedures, participated in many medical studies, and has been hospitalized an inordinate amount. Despite everything that he endures with sickle cell anemia, Zion still manages to maintain his grades in school, keep a great sense of humor, and be kind and caring those around him — all while sharing his zest for life with others through performances in theatre and dance.
Fact: The two million sickest children on Medicaid account for only six percent of enrollees but 40 percent of costs.