Australia – Stella Young was a writer, comedian and disability advocate. She sadly passed away on December 6 aged 32. Ms Young was born with the genetic condition, osteogenesis imperfecta.
ABC News report that in a statement issued by the family, Ms Young died unexpectedly on Saturday night, but was in no pain.
“With great sadness we acknowledge the passing of Stella Young, our much-loved and irreplaceable daughter and sister,”
Tributes have poured in across the globe. John Ajaka, the New South Wales minister for disability services told that he was “shocked and saddened” when he heard of her death and that she will be “truly missed.”
“Stella had a wicked way of making us question and face up to misunderstanding and discrimination against people with a disability – to make us laugh at ourselves.”
ABC managing director Mark Scott told:
“Stella helped us understand disability issues by sharing with a raw honesty about her own life and forcing us to reconsider how we think about disability and create an environment where those with disability can best get on with their own lives.
“She took great delight in challenging conventional wisdom and lazy thinking.”
Paralympian Kurt Fearnley told that life would be “less interesting” without her and tweeted that “She fearlessly challenged every stereotype of disability,”
Comedian Josh Thomas also used twitter to pay his respects:
“Stella Young is so terrific. A hilarious, rare and super cool lady. Heart breaking news.”
Stella Young started campaigning for disability rights aged only 14, she edited Ramp Up, ABC’s disability news website as well as contributing to Ouch!, the BBC’s disability blog.
A private funeral is due to take place soon, followed by a public event in Melbourne.
Stella Young’s thought provoking TED Talk that was filmed in April this year can be viewed below. Autism Daily Newscast would like to offer our deepest condolences to the family of Ms Young.