Some of the most famous people who suffered from mental retardation (MR) include actor Chris Burke, writer and poet Gretchen Josephson, and artist Dwight Mackinto. All these renowned people were highly acclaimed worldwide in their respective field and are known to have fought lifelong battles against their crippling mental disorders. These three great personalities were all diagnosed with a genetic disease, called Down’s syndrome or Trisomy-21, which is characterized by mongoloid features and severe MR.
Another famous personality who was reported to have this disorder was Kim Peek. Peek, known as the mega savant, was diagnosed to have the mental disorder since birth and died when she was 58. The famous movie, ‘Rain’, is based on the biography of this great man.
Chris Burke: He had a genetic defect called the Down’s syndrome at time of his birth. In his adulthood, he always attended special schools and fought an enduring battle against his mental illness, He was well known for his humor and friendly nature. He became famous as a TV actor in ABCs show “Life Goes On”, aired on the WLS Channel 7 at 6 pm every Sunday.
Gretchen Josephson: She was a writer who suffered from severe MR, caused as a result of Down’s syndrome. She became renowned after the publication of her book, named “Bus Girl”. This book is a collection of poems inspired from her life and her life-long struggle against her mental illness.
Dwight Mackinto: Similarly, Dwight Mackinto was a world famous artist who was also praised for his courage and a successful career built despite his mental illness. Like Burke and Gretchen, Dwight Mackinto was also diagnosed to have the genetic disorder, the Down’s syndrome, at birth. It was this genetic disorder that caused severe MR in his early adulthood.
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