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Student News of Liberty High School


Student News of Liberty High School


Student News of Liberty High School


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Living Life Large: A Journey With MPS

Danica Boni lives her high school life to the fullest while fighting MPS
Alix Queen
Dani Boni performs a song at the 2022-2023 Liberty Theater Showcase.

From birth, Danica (Dani) Boni has had many obstacles involving her condition. Boni had to get infusions when she was younger due to her enzyme count being low. She had surgery on her legs and eyes and different parts of my body to help treat the condition. Dani Boni, a senior here at Liberty has had MPS Type 1 since birth. 

Mucopolysaccharidosis, more commonly known as MPS Type 1, is a condition where a baby is born without any enzyme. Throughout their life, many symptoms may occur such as  leg and joint issues, losing vision, and hearing loss.

“People who have MPS are born without a specific type of sugar in their body so they get bone marrow transplants,” Boni said.

When you are born, it is uncommon to know if you have this condition until the symptoms show which is usually after your first year of life. People with this condition often have a build up of fluid in the brain, also known as hydrocephalus. This build up can apply pressure to the brain and over time cause damage.

Other symptoms include heart valve abnormalities, short stature, and joint deformities that affect mobility. All of these affect someone who has MPS Type 1 daily life. People with MPS Type 1 were only expected to live until 5 years old, but some get a bone marrow transplant to help strengthen their immune system.

At 11 months old on Nov. 9, 2006, Dani Boni was in the hospital for a bone marrow transplant. (Submitted by Dani Boni)

During the time when COVID-19 hit all parts of the United States, Boni had to switch to virtual schooling to further her education in freshman and sophomore year. Boni’s immune system was very weak and her family didn’t want to risk any more health problems.

For someone with MPS, there are good days and bad days. It feels interesting because you never know if you’re going to have a bad or good day because we have a lot of body aches,” Boni said.

Some movements they have a difficult time with due to their fractal bones. But Boni doesn’t let that stop her. “I usually take a walker everyday because I get aches in my legs.”

“I take three baths a day to help with my aches and take lots of meds for it,” Boni said. “Then there’s other days where I feel fine and I do the normal things teenagers do.”

I try to live life to the fullest.

— Dani Boni

Boni’s high school experience has been back-and-forth because of the amount of walking around she does, but she does enjoy the classes and the teachers.

Mrs. Gehrke is one of the inspirations Boni has here at Liberty. “She is always making sure I’m okay and always checks in with me every time I see her,” Boni said. “I feel comfortable to tell her what’s going on with my life.”

Boni is part of the drama club which means she is a member of the theater family. She is involved in plays and musicals that our theater program performs. “Having Dani as a student has meant learning from and teaching someone who is incredibly driven, both because of who she is as a person and because of all the obstacles she’s had to work through,” Gehrke said.

Boni is passionate about the things she loves. She is thoughtful in how she shows others she cares, and is determined to not let her diagnosis keep her from experiencing life to the fullest. “My first impression of Dani was that she was fiercely independent and loved theatre,” Mrs. Gehrke said. “I knew we’d get along right away.”

Just because Boni has MPS Type 1 doesn’t mean that it surrounds her life. “I try to live life to the fullest,” Boni said.

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About the Contributors
Caitlin McDonnell
Caitlin McDonnell, Reporter
Caitlin McDonnell is a junior and this her first year in journalism. She loves photography and graphic design as well as writing stories. Outside of school she works at a retail store, Maurices, where she helps many different people with fashion. In the summer she works as a lifeguard at Twin Chimneys Pool. During her free time she loves hanging out with friends and family, reading, and taking many photos of nature and people. When she graduates she wants to be a photographer for various events. She hopes to succeed in journalism and learn more about photography for the future.
Alix Queen
Alix Queen, Weekly Content Editor
Alix Queen is a senior and in their fourth year of publications. They are the weekly content editor while being in their third year of yearbook. Along with being in yearbook, Alix is in theater and is Mr. Hall’s TA. Outside of school, Alix works at JCPenney, as well as reads books, plays music, and scrolls on TikTok for hours on end. Along with this, Alix is usually hanging out with their best friend, Julia Wiley. After their final year of high school, Alix plans on going to a four year school for journalism and hopes to be a photographer.

Comments (3)

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  • M

    Mollie Rathburn | Mar 3, 2024 at 5:28 am

    Dani is a strong young woman. So.proud of the fight she has inside of her. Though we have never met in person, her mom and I have been friends well before she was born. So I have witnessed this journey of a very special life. God has blessed you with this life and you are living it to the fullest.

  • K

    Kelli Dunn | Mar 2, 2024 at 11:28 pm

    Amazing job! Thank you for the article.

  • C

    Connie G. Adams | Mar 2, 2024 at 10:48 pm

    I live next door to this amazing young lady. She has an extremely supportive mother. They are both an inspiration and a shining example of never give up.