Sampson Gordon “Sam” Berns was an American boy who suffered from progeria and helped raise awareness about the disease. Born on October 23, 1996 and died on January 10, 2014. He was the subject of the HBO documentary Life According to Sam, which was first screened in January 2013. He died one year later, after appearing in a TEDx Talks video titled “My philosophy for a happy life. His parents, Scott Berns and Leslie Gordon, both pediatricians, received their son’s diagnosis when he was less than two years of age. Coarsely a year later, they established the Progeria Research Foundation in an exertion to increase awareness of the condition, to promote research into the underlying causes of and possible treatments for the disease, and to offer resources for the support of sufferers and their families.
On November 9, 2013, the Boston Bruins welcomed Berns to drop the ceremonial first puck for a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. He helped host Progeria Awareness Night at the TD Garden in Boston, dropping the ceremonial puck, serving as Assistant Equipment Manager for the team, and watching their warm ups from the team’s bench. Berns and Zdeno Chára, the Bruins captain, had been strong friends since 2006, when Berns attended a Bruins game and met Chára afterwards. Chára had scored in that game and Berns blurted out “You’re the hero!” Chára responded: “No, no, you’re my hero, our hero.”
Before the puck dropped on Tuesday, January 14, 2014, the Bruins honored their special friend, Sam Berns, with a moment of silence and video tribute.
New England Patriots
The plan was that Berns was going to be an honorary captain when the New England Patriots hosted the Indianapolis Colts in a divisional playoff game in January 2014.
Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft issued a statement on the news of the passing of Berns.
His Philosophy Of A Happy Life
(1) “Be OK with what you ultimately can’t do, because there is so much you CAN do.“
Sam said he is very much aware of the things he can’t do, like ride a roller coaster, but instead of focusing on that he instead focuses on the things he can do, and the things he is passionate about. Sam said you can put somethings that were impossible or out of reach before in the “can-do category” by making adjustments. To illustrate this point with an example he plays a clip of himself with the marching band, the story he opened with, which further illuminates his theme or his core message.
(2) “Surround yourself with people you want to be around.” Sam talked about the importance of having high-quality people and great friends in your life, and a close family. “We see each other for who we are on the inside,” Sam said of his friends and loved ones. You can see Sam gets choked up when talking about how the relationships in his life supersedes even all the other positive aspects of his life. Our friends, our families, our communities, Sam said, are really the things that can make a huge difference in our lives.
(3) Keep moving forward. Here Sam quotes Walt Disney: “Around here…we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things.” Sam said he was able to get through difficult times by always having something in the future to look forward to, even if it was just a small thing like a new comic book or a football game. “This mentality includes staying in a forward-thinking state of mind. I try hard not to waste energy feeling badly about myself, Sam said, because when I do I get stuck in a paradox where there is no room for happiness or any other emotion.”
Sam was so positive and so optimistic about his future. “No matter what I choose to become, I believe I can change the world. And as I am striving to change the world, I will be happy.” He showed a clip from the film which he said embodied his philosophy. Even though he had change in four years, he said, his philosophy had not. Sam told a story at the end of being very sick. It was a time he had to use all his strength and put his philosophy to the challenge. It was the three keys above that saw him through the roughest times, he said. “Being brave isn’t supposed to be easy,” Sam said. “But it’s the key to moving forward.”
“Being brave isn’t supposed to be easy, but it’s the key to moving forward.”
Sam’s talk is a beautiful thing. It is positive, authentic, and from the heart. His presentation is a wonderful contribution that is continuing to touch people, and inspire them to live life as fully as they can.
A Word From Me.
Life as we all know, is full of uncertainties. In our walks of life, we come across many people who tend to under-estimate the less privileged around them. But have you for once sat yourself down and examined, what gives your life a meaning? Well, it doesn’t matter your looks, how you perceive yourself to be and even your family background, whether you are disabled or not. Just understand that “Disability is not Inability” what matters is, you have a lot to bless the world with; the hidden potentials stacked inside of you. Never in your life, allow the opinions of critics or even the influences from friends, drown out your inner voice. After reading the story of Sam Berns, I realized that, irrespective of who you think you are and where you originate from, there’s so much responsibility to live for; you can make it, regardless of the perception people have about you. Live a happy Life. Success Awaits Us All.
Source: Wikipedia-Sam Berns