Despite being told that she has a few years to live, Ontlametse Phalatse didn’t allow her condition to prevent her from dreaming big. She was able to meet some famous people, including President Jacob Zuma
Mhlongo, radio personality Redi Thlabi and sport personality Jimmy Tau.
Somizi wrote, “Wow. My angel is gone. You won this fight. You were told you will never live beyond 13 years. You had 18 years of a great life.”
Dominican Convent School, where Ontlametse matriculated last year, also sent their condolences.
“Ontlametse was loved and was an inspiration to many people both at school and in the wider community,” the school said.
FOLLOWING HER DREAMS
During interviews, Ontlametse said her condition has inspired her to work even harder and achieve some of her dreams.
She battled against the condition to complete her high school education and said she wanted to further her studies and become a motivational speaker, life coach and a psychologist. She continued on doing short courses that would help her to become a life coach. Ontlametse wanted to write a book and have her own show where she would reach out to more people.
Young, articulate and vibrate Ontlametse left people with smiles wherever she went.
But some parents were scared that her condition might affect their children badly. This, however, didn’t dampen Ontlametse’s high spirits because she understood that people didn’t know enough about her condition. As a result, she went on to learn more about her condition. The disorder took its toll on her own family, but they raised her to be the strong woman she became.
“I accepted to live with progeria and was thankful enough for having the family that supported me throughout my life,” she said.
Even when Ontlametse went to the doctors to seek help and they gave her wrong medication, she survived that and lived an honest healthy life. Her mother, Bella, declined to comment, saying she was still grieving.
HER CONDITION INSPIRED HER TO WORK EVEN HARDER