MARLTON, N.J. - A New Jersey 13-year-old girl with a rare genetic disorder is now a pageant queen.
Ella Wilson of Marlton, New Jersey, shines on the stage and off. Ella, who is a Marlton middle school seventh-grader, is a newly crowned pageant queen. She is the winner of New Jersey Miss Amazing Jr. Teen 2019, which is a pageant for girls with disabilities.
“I have a genetic disorder called neurofibromatosis,” Ella told FOX 29’s Jennifer Joyce.
NF1 affects one in 3,000 people while it is genetic, 50 percent of cases happen spontaneously at conception. Symptoms are different for everyone. Ella has tumors in her brain and throughout her body.
“I am blind in my left eye because it grew in my optic pathways and I have poor coordination, learning disabilities,” Ella explained.
“Knowing that there’s something in her that’s constantly growing or causing chaos in her body is just really, really hard to watch,” her mom, Terri Wilson, said.
Ella, along with her parents, her sister Claire, and her friends do not let the diagnosis define her.
FOX 29’s Jennifer Joyce caught up with Ella at TCBY Wednesday night in Marlton. Ella is raising money to go to the national Miss Amazing pageant in Chicago in August.
"It's nice to be able to see her do these things, accomplish these things and be successful,” Terri explained.
If you wish to help Ella with her journey to Chicago, please click here.