Inspirational Social Media Star Claire Wineland Dead at 21

She suffered from cystic fibrosis, suffered a stroke after lung transplant
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 4, 2018 6:02 AM CDT
Inspirational Cystic Fibrosis Patient Is Dead at 21
A file photo of Claire Wineland, who started a foundation for cystic fibrosis.   (Photo: Business Wire)

A young social media star who inspired legions of fans with her optimism despite a lifelong battle with cystic fibrosis has died at 21—a week after receiving a new set of lungs in a transplant, reports People. Claire Wineland suffered a stroke soon after the Aug. 26 transplant, and her family took her off life support Sunday. "After a week of intensive care and various life saving procedures, it became clear that it was Claire’s time to go," says a post at the Claire's Place Foundation—an organization she set up at age 13, notes CNN. Wineland had a big following on various social media platforms, including Instagram and YouTube. She even gave a TEDx talk last year. "Life isn’t just about being happy," she said. "It’s not about how you feel second to second. It’s about what you’re making of your life and whether you can find a deep pride in who you are and what you’ve given."

An Instagram post from June was typical: It catalogued a series of setbacks she had recently suffered, including the discovery of mold in her apartment, particularly dangerous given her lung ailment. But she had no regrets, even though some had warned her of the risks of moving out on her own. "You have to fight like hell to make sure that the life reflected back at you right now is one you want to be living," she wrote. "I’m not going to let myself live a life I’m resentful of," one consumed by her health issues. One of her last posts was an excited tweet on Aug. 26, upon learning the news that she'd be getting a transplant. "It's a GO!!!" she wrote. "Surgeon said they are perfect!! See y'all on (the) other side." (Cystic fibrosis patients in Canada live longer than those in the US.)

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