A Student with Rare Skin Condition Attends a Graduation Ceremony

A teenager at Dana Hills High School managed to attend her high school graduation party despite battling with an infrequent skin condition. The condition has for a long time left her in the house. She is ever restricted from going out. However, she braved the sunlight just for a single day to attend her graduation ceremony.

Riley McCoy achieved to step out in the sun, wearing a protective hood that protected her from the external environment. She did this so that she could receive her diploma certificate alongside her peers in Southern California. The 18-year-old girl was born with a skin condition referred to as xeroderma pigmentosum XP. This is a unique genetic skin condition that renders the patient suffering from extreme sensitive Ultraviolet light. In McCoy’s case, even one minute of sunlight exposure could be detrimental to her skin. It can cause severe skin burns and blistering that can lead to skin cancer.

She, however, succeeded to join her peers in the graduation. She wore a UV-Safe helmet under her graduation cap that protected her from the dangerous UV light. Riley shared her excitement with CNN. She said that she was not nervous that anything would happen to her. All she felt was total excitement. Being able to celebrate her graduation with fellow students was something that she never anticipated.

She continued to say that the moment was bittersweet because she had to leave everybody. The reality made her sad. But she was determined to spend some little time outside with her friends. Riley was the last student to walk in at the graduation ceremony. She was brought to the graduation square in a golf cart. When she arrived, she received a standing ovation from her fellow students and all the guests that had attended the graduation. It was so brave of her to attend.

People who suffer from a similar skin condition like Riley mostly experience a form of neurological degeneration. Less than 40% of the patients with this disease manage to live beyond the age of 20. However, those that have the less invasive form of the disease can live into their 40’s. The skin condition has had many victims dampen their ambitions. Well, this is not the case with Riley. She is determined to pursue her dreams. She is now planning to join a community college to study theatre. He mother was so shocked. She never imagined that her daughter would want to take such a risk.

Haley Thompson

About Haley Thompson

Haley is a journalist with over 10 years of experience in the field. She has held many editorial roles at a number of high-profile publishers – both offline as well as online.

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