In order to help kick off the Disability Awareness Week at Salt Lake Community College, the Disability Resource Center (DRC) invited David Osmond of the “Osmond Boys” to perform at the Taylorsville Redwood Campus on Monday, Sept. 16.
Osmond is most popular for being the nephew of Donny and Marie Osmond and son of Osmonds’ leader, Alan Osmond.
“In 2006, David was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, and he has become a symbol of hope for the MS community,” says DRC director Candida Darling introducing David Osmond.
Osmond sang pop songs by Black Eyed Peas, Jason Mraz and even Alicia Keys. He kept the energy high by involving the audience and having several people sing along.
After the music, Osmond shared stories about his family’s history and their discovery by Walt Disney.
Osmond tied the story to the DRC by explaining that his father was the oldest performer in the family, but not the eldest brother; there were two older brothers who were both born deaf.
The two eldest brothers were taught music by their mother, Osmond’s grandmother Olive Osmond, and subsequently started The Osmond Foundation for the Children of the World to help all individuals with disabilities.
The Osmond Foundation will be celebrating 30 years next month but is better known as Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals (CMNH). In its 30 year lifespan, the CMNH has raised over $5 billion for children.
“It’s amazing what we can accomplish when we don’t care who gets the credit,” said Olive Osmond to her grandson before passing away, a statement that has stuck with David Osmond.
Alan Osmond was diagnosed with MS, and in his time, there were not many resources for MS. His father remained tough through the illness.
David Osmond was diagnosed with MS, but his symptoms were different from his father’s.
His father started out by losing his ability to play guitar, hold the microphone and tripping on stage while David’s symptoms were pain in his toes that eventually moved up and overtook his entire body. MS affects individuals in different ways.
David’s diagnosis took place right after his engagement to his wife, who was recently diagnosed with cancer.
“I have MS, but MS doesn’t have me,” says Osmond.
A positive attitude was also, as Osmond stated, one of the greatest things to come out of his diagnosis. Since being diagnosed with MS, he has learned to look at life a different way, taking less for granted and learning to focus less on what you can’t do and more on what you can.
“I believe that in life, people don’t get ahead – because they aim way too high with their goals and they miss by a mile – it’s not because of that; it’s because they aim way too low,” says Osmond. “I know, speaking with the [DRC] and hearing what their goals are, they shoot for the stars.”