Two days after Marc Elliot was born, he was diagnosed with a rare birth defect called Hirschsprung's disease. Hirschsprung's had given him almost no working intestines, and no ability to digest food on his own power. Despite the odds of death or a horrible quality of life, one brave surgeon, Dr. Jessie Ternberg, took Marc under her wings, took a chance, and saved his life. After spending the first six months of his life in the hospital, undergoing seven experimental surgeries, and followed by several more years in and out of medical facilities in St. Louis, Missouri, Marc became known as the "miracle baby."
In his presentation, "What Makes You Tic?," he took his experiences of not fitting in, of not feeling comfortable with others, to discuss fundamental lessons about tolerance—how to live with our own, and others' differences. Little did he know this would become his calling.
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