Kids Doing Good: Mia Taylor motivates walkers for Shriners' event

Mia Taylor. (KATU Photo)

An 8-year-old was center stage to encourage people to walk and roll for Shriners Hospital.

Sunday was the first walk for the children’s hospital, and Mia Taylor was called on to motivate the walkers.

She’s in the third grade but takes online classes because of her frequent visits every week to Portland Shriners Hospital.

She uses a wheelchair part of the time. It’s decked out in pink, her favorite color, and the wheels light up, just like her personality. While she doesn’t use it all the time, it certainly helps her when she needs it.

“I have EDS, which is short for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. I have connective tissue, which is like the glue that holds the body together, but my glue doesn’t work very well,” she says.

EDS is a genetic disease. Her mom was diagnosed as an adult, so they were able to pinpoint what was happening to Mia.

"Running isn't good for us. Jumping isn't good for us. Sometimes we even twist our ankle in our sleep," Mia says.

Her visits to Shriners are filled with treatment and therapy, like a modified rock wall. And unlike most people who have to go to the doctor, she looks forward to her visits because she feels they are helping her.

"They help me with my ankle, because when I came here I told them I sprained my ankle all the time. They gave me braces for that," she says.

Her great attitude and determination are a couple of the reasons Mia was selected to talk at Shriners first annual Walk and Roll for Love event over the weekend. And she was happy to talk about ways Shriners helps her live a happier and healthier life.

"EDS doesn't go away. I definitely think they've helped me with it," she says.

Mia appeared in the KATU studios Wednesday with KATU’s Deb Knapp to talk about the walk. Click above to watch her story.

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