Faces of Rare Disease update: Ross Grimball passes away

Our condolences go out to the family of 20-year-old Ross Grimball, of Patterson, who passed away at his home on May 19.

We introduced you to Ross in November 2012 in a "Faces of Rare Disease" story. Ross was living with the terminal diagnosis of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Duchenne is a deadly and fast-moving form of muscular dystrophy that affects one in every 3,600 male infants. A defective gene for "dystrophin," a muscle protein, causes the disorder.

It is passed down from a carrier female to a male, that causes muscle weakness around age six, wheelchair dependence around age 12 and breathing difficulties and heart disease around age 20.

Those were conditions Ross accepted with a positive attitude. This is what he had to say in the story last fall, "Since I've gotten older," said Ross, "I don't even feel like I'm disabled, I've just accepted it and I don't feel like I'm any different."

Ross's parents say they will continue fighting for research and a cure for this devastating disease.

Click here to watch or read the original story with Ross Grimball and his parents.

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