Providence, RI (WTXF) A photo of a little girl with Down syndrome and cancer reacting to a photo of herself is taking the internet by storm.
Providence Rhode Island photographer 29-year-old Laura Kilgus with 9ten Photography works with the Down Syndrome Society of Rhode Island. She created the portrait of 5-year-old Celia, which quickly went viral. Celia is battling cancer and has Down syndrome.
"Seeing her and the others react to their photos was priceless. Their happiness was so contagious," Kilgus told FOX 29.
Laura says her nephew Tommy was a spark behind her involved with the DSSRI. Tommy was born with Down syndrome about 5 years ago in Buffalo, NY. She wasn't able to visit him as much as she wanted due to distance, so she wanted to honor him in a special way. That's when Laura reached out to the DSSRI to offer her photography services to the organization to help raise awareness for the cause. Over the years, Laura has offered complimentary mini photoshoots for the families of the DSSRI and the images are showcased in the galleries like the one Celia was featured in.
"The kids from the DSSRI are seriously some of the most inspiring, funny and happiest children I have ever met. What has been most special has been getting a lot of one-on-one time with these families over the years during our minishoots. The gallery was just my way to try to thank them for raising such cool kids, and to let them know that they are appreciated for all that they do daily, and to raise awareness for Down syndrome," Kilgus explained.