any famous people with CIDP/GBS?
AnonymousAugust 2, 2009 at 1:19 pm
so the refrigerator perry was diagnosed last summer and was hospitalized this april. does anyone know any other famous people with this condition. I cant help but think that annette fonochelo, montel williams and richard prior have greatly advanced the awareness of MS just by having it. I know cidp is alot more rare but it would be nice if awareness of this disease was such that I didnt have to explain what it is to every general practicioner that I see. I also read years ago that FDR was possibly paralyzed by GBS and not polio.
AnonymousAugust 3, 2009 at 12:37 pm
Some recent medical researchers have noted that Franklin D. Roosevelt may have been mis-diagnosed with polio and instead may have contracted GBS. They note that he became ill much later in life than most who suffer from polio (also known as infantile paralysis) and that most of his other symptoms are more consistent with GBS than polio. There were a number of postings on this discusssion board about a couple years ago that discussed this matter, and you can probably still locate them.
William (“the Refrigerator” Perry), an all-pro lineman for the Chicago Bears, became seriously ill with GBS about a year and a half ago. Postings are available about his illness also.
The head basketball coach at Tennessee Tech (I believe) became afflicted with it and at least attempted to return to coaching while still in a wheel chair. I haven’t heard about his progress recently.
—Don (Fran’s husband and chronic caregiver)
AnonymousAugust 4, 2009 at 12:46 am
I just took this off of Wikipedia. Note that FDR is included. Unfortunately, no one famous seems willing to step up to the plate to educate the public on GBS.
Kelly – Marie Stewart, who plays also wheelchair – bound Hayley Ramsay in popular British Soap, Hollyoaks.
Morten Wieghorst, International Danish footballer who once won the Scottish Football Championship with Celtic FC. He was diagnosed in 2000, and missed a year of his footballing career before returning in November 2001. He played 2 games for Celtic before returning to Denmark with Brøndby IF.
Andy Griffith, actor on Andy Griffith Show, and Matlock. He developed Guillain-Barré in 1983. 
Rachel Chagall, actress, contracted GBS in 1982. In 1987 she portrayed Gabriela Brimmer, a notable disabilities activist. 
Joseph Heller, author, contracted GBS in 1981. This episode in his life is recounted in the autobiographical No Laughing Matter, which contains alternating chapters by Heller and his good friend Speed Vogel.
Raymond J. Wieczorek, former Mayor, Manchester, New Hampshire and current Member of New Hampshire Executive Council. He developed Guillain-Barré in 1993, but recovered and served three additional terms as mayor.
Franklin D. Roosevelt, U.S. president. In 2003, a peer-reviewed study found that it was more likely that Roosevelt’s paralysis–long attributed to poliomyelitis–was actually Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Markus Babbel, former international footballer, contracted GBS in 2001, following a period suffering from the Epstein-Barr virus. He lost almost an entire year of his footballing career between the two illnesses and never again demonstrated the same level of ability that won him over 50 caps for Germany.
Serge Payer, Canadian-born professional hockey player. After battling and overcoming the syndrome, He set up the Serge Payer foundation, which is dedicated to raising money for research into new treatments and cures for Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Lucky Oceans, Grammy Award winning musician with Asleep at the Wheel was diagnosed with GBS in 2008.
William “The Refrigerator” Perry, former professional American football player with the Chicago Bears was diagnosed with GBS in 2008.
Tony Benn, British politician.
Len Pasquarelli, sports writer and analyst for ESPN and resident of the Pro Football Writers of America, diagnosed in 2008.[27
AnonymousMay 25, 2011 at 11:18 pm
Pauly Fuemana, may not be a familiar name to you, but his ’90s song “How Bizarre” is a great earworm that occupied the #1 slot all over the globe.
He died of respiratory failure, a complication of CIDP. But what a great tune to leave us. 🙂
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