There were two people that made history this week, Jamie Brewer, who was to be the first woman with Down Syndrome to walk the runway during fashion week in New York and Carmen Dell ‘Orefice, the first 83 year old supermodel to still be in the business. Why was this so important? Because Jamie was a mentally challenged adult with talent and looks to do so. Carmen Dell ‘Orefice took a stand for age.
This excited me because a lot of people with this type of challenge were stepping out. Not all were able to be models, but some went further than their day programs and jobs in closed shops. A few on the high end of this condition were even able to drive a car as discovered by me while watching a news program as a teenager. For some, like my physical therapist on base, found it difficult to understand.
Most of the time some sort of group home or care facility would be their destination, but not for one actress, named Andrea Fay Friedman, who appeared in an episode of “Family Guy” –a parody spoofing Sarah Palin’s son, Trig. Also, she appeared in an episode of “Law & Order : SVU” as a special needs adult that got pregnant When a news magazine did a story on her, it was discovered that she drove a car.
After reading about Chris Burke’s start in acting, he inspired me also after seeing him on “Life Goes On” The role was made for him.
Ms. Dell ‘Orefice admitted after so long in the business that she was still navigating the manual on her job. Based on what was viewed by me, it looked like there was no problem. Being realistic, about it assignments start fading after a certain plateau was reached. Christie Brinkley stopped modeling bathing suits at 38. Even though Linda Evans was the new face at 40 in the 1980s, roles started to fade because Hollywood was for the young. Like these women, my mother is a very beautiful. To put labels like geriatric, old, or elder was an offense to me and them.
It was awesome to see these people make a stand.