Monday, July 23, 2007
Darius Weems and Logan Smalley
If you'd never left your hometown, where would you want to go? If you didn't have much time left to live, what would you do? If you told your friends, would they make it happen?
Fifteen-year-old Darius Weems has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. After watching his brother die of DMS, Weems started showing symptoms himself. He lost muscle use in his legs and eventually needed a wheelchair. When he told his friends he had always wanted to see the parts of the country he missed growing up in housing projects in Athens, Georgia, his friend Logan Smalley and Weems' other college-aged friends decided to take him. They all decided to go west.
"Darius Goes West" is a documentary chronicling a 7,000-mile cross-country journey that brings Weems to a place he had seen only in his dreams: the ocean. The group travels with the dual mission of evaluating wheelchair accessibility in the United States and raising awareness of DMD. Along the way they gain a new sense of brotherhood and create an award-winning film that shows even when life is uncertain, it can be lived with imagination and gusto.
Update: Watch the CNN.com Live interview
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Young People Who Rock is a weekly interview series focused on people under 30 -- from CEOs to entertainers to athletes to community and political leaders -- who are doing remarkable things. CNN Anchor Nicole Lapin introduces them here, then interviews them Fridays on CNN.com Live. Log on in the 3 p.m. ET hour to catch the interviews.