Lori Maynard learned last year that her daughter had rheumatoid arthritis. The diagnosis followed about three months of rapid degenerative illness, said Maynard in a telephone interview from her New Jersey home.
17-year-old Alisha Pierce suddenly came down with a cold, then a fever, caught viral pneumonia, and passed away inside two days. More than three years later, her mother, Shawn Pierce, still remembers her daughter with cerebral palsy.
Almost overnight in 1969, "Mary" (not her real name) lost most of the sight in her right eye at age 13 due to glaucoma and soon would lose nearly all sight in both eyes. Yet her biggest challenge in life