A list of notable persons with CFS: some surprises here.

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by kholmes, Nov 2, 2006.

  1. kholmes

    kholmes New Member

    (Piggybacking on Redwillow's post).

    I found this list of notable persons believed to have suffered from CFS on Wikipedia. It's definitely not complete. I agree that it would be great to have some celebrity spokespersons who would be willing to speak up, if able, about their experience with CFS. I didn't realize that the bassist Flea, from the band, The Red Hot Chile Peppers, suffered with it, as does a member of the band, My Chemical Romance. Maybe it will take somebody of the younger generation.

    Michelle Akers, soccer player
    Brian Aldiss, author
    Susan Blackmore, parapsychologist, author
    Howard Bloom, evolutionary psychologist, author
    Cher, pop singer, actress
    Neil Codling, formerly of Suede
    Dennis DeYoung, formerly of Styx
    Blake Edwards, writer and director of such movies as Breakfast at Tiffany's, 10, and The Pink Panther
    John Fahey, folk guitarist
    Flea, musician
    Clare Francis, international yachtswoman and author
    Susan Harris, television writer and producer, who incorporated her experiences into the fifth season of The Golden Girls.
    Laura Hillenbrand, author of the book Seabiscuit: An American Legend, the basis for the film Seabiscuit
    Kelly Holmes, athlete
    Blair Hornstine, New Jersey student who sued her school district when it wanted her to share valedictorian honors with a classmate
    Andy Hunt, former British soccer player
    Keith Jarrett, jazz pianist
    Katharine, Duchess of Kent
    Henry Percy, 11th Duke of Northumberland
    Alastair Lynch, Australian rules footballer
    Stuart Murdoch, of the band Belle & Sebastian
    Barry Sheen, motorcyclist
    Martin Speight, artist and former cricket player, Sussex CCC and Durham CCC.
    Ali Smith,writer
    Frank Iero, musician, My Chemical Romance.
    Anna Hemmings, Britain’s leading female marathon canoeist.
    Andrew Oldcorn, golfer.
    Joanna Griggs, Commonwealth swimmer (Australian)
    Peter Marshall (squash player), Former British No1 Squash Player - Condition described in his biography, 'Shattered-A Champion's Fight Against A Mystery Illness'
    [This Message was Edited on 11/02/2006]
  2. foggyfroggy

    foggyfroggy Guest

    That's quite a list!

    I love John Fahey, what a shame. Of course it's a shame for all of them/us.

  3. phoenixrising2

    phoenixrising2 New Member

    how many men are on there? I think this is more of an equal opportunity disease than we may realize.

    I think if that were more publicly known, it might get us more attention. They can't say, "Oh, it's just a hypochondrical women's thing."



  4. Liz919

    Liz919 New Member

    Flea is the bassist for Red Hot Chili Peppers. Great band and he's done a lot of other stuff (movies, side ventures). Obviously there's hope because some people can manage to lead extremely active lives even while they're sick.
  5. seen the whole thing.

    There's an amazing and suprising list of people with MS somewhere, also..

    Thanks for posting this,

    I agree, shows some can live active lives.....but, at what $$$ cost, cuz, I sure can't afford some treatments, that I know would help...Professionals see the best & most knowledgeable doctors, etc..

    I know Montel goes to Switzerland for his MRI's check ups, etc because they are the leading MS centers/research...

    Be nice if we could all pick & choose. My doctor couldn't even get me into the Mayo clinic 3-4 yrs ago, they said they were "backlogged 6 months" or some such junk. Wouldn't have said that if she'd said "I have _______(Britney Spears, etc) here in my office...she thinks she has a cold."

    Still though, I'm not tryin' to be a hater, if that's how this came off. Just *envious* but glad for them, who still have any quality of life/ability to pursue the things they enjoy/love and or depend on for an income.

    (((Hugs 2 all)))

    Laura M
  6. LouiseK

    LouiseK New Member

    This is an interesting list . . .since I have so much trouble getting groceries I am wondering how one can be a professional or top-amateur athlete with CFS. When I hear stuff like that it makes me think I must be dying (kidding . . .sort-of) since I would be in bed for two weeks if I ran to the corner.

    How can one go on a rock-tour with this? I can't even plan a doctor's appointment. . .

    Perhaps many of you agree that the worst of it all is the unpredictableness (if that's a word)

    Sigh . . .
  7. MamaDove

    MamaDove New Member

    Such a talented man, I never knew...
  8. LouiseK

    LouiseK New Member

    This is an interesting list . . .since I have so much trouble getting groceries I am wondering how one can be a professional or top-amateur athlete with CFS. When I hear stuff like that it makes me think I must be dying (kidding . . .sort-of) since I would be in bed for two weeks if I ran to the corner.

    How can one go on a rock-tour with this? I can't even plan a doctor's appointment. . .

    Perhaps many of you agree that the worst of it all is the unpredictableness (if that's a word)

    Sigh . . .
  9. kholmes

    kholmes New Member

    It is amazing that some people can still lead such active lives with CFS. I'm disabled now, but I was able to teach full-time and ski or mountain bike on the weekends for many years, even though I knew something was wrong with me.

    For some of these sufferers, CFS meant the end of their careers. Dennis DeYoung became housebound and was no longer able to tour with Styx (on their reunion tour in 2000, I think) after being stricken. For Michelle Akers, it meant the end of her soccer career.

    Blake Edwards had years of inactivity, as did songwriter and CFS sufferer, Randy Newman, who didn't make this list. Keith Jarrett has recovered somewhat and has made a new CD, but for a decade, he was very ill and did very little. Laura Hillenbrand had a relapse just after finishing SEABISCUIT.

    So I think that just as on this board, there's a wide variety of levels of functionality among the PWC notables.

    [This Message was Edited on 11/02/2006]
  10. shootingstar

    shootingstar New Member

    I'm amazed there is a list this long. There are days I can barely get out of bed and do anything at all. Average days I have to ration my time carefully. Even on best days can't imagine being able to accomplish anywhere near what anyone in the position of a celebrity would need to. Did these people accomplish everything before they were wiped out or do they somehow work around it and, if so, how??
  11. kholmes

    kholmes New Member

    (See my post just above)

    I think CFS severity varies widely for celebs, just as it does for us on the this board.

    I think that for some, CFS meant the end of their careers. Others went into remission and were able to return to athletics, music, or performance, or other careers. For still others, CFS hasn't been devastating enough to end their careers, but their lives are significantly hampered by it.

    But I think anyone who has CFS in any degree or measure, celebrity or not, is a "notable"!
  12. AquariusGirl

    AquariusGirl New Member

    I saw an interview with Lisa Marie Presley on Oprah where she said she had Epstein Barr for 2 years and was almost bedridden--around the time of Michael Jackson marriage/divorce. I know that EBV isn't exactly CFS but it made me feel better to know that she had it and is much better now.

  13. pw7575

    pw7575 New Member

    if some of these celebreties got a correct diagnosis. I mean here is what I read about Flea.

    Everything first hit home with the death of Hillel Slovak. "When Hillel died it was during one of the happiest times of my life," says Flea, prodding at his green tea. "I was married and completely in love and had a baby on the way. I was smoking weed and playing basketball and going home and loving my wife. I felt very connected with a lot of people, but a lot of that was shattered. When Hillel died, I completely hit the deck." The shellshocked bassist veered between periods of abstinence and abuse, which came to an end when he hit the bottom at 31. "I was this incredible burst of wildness, and suddenly I was hacked down," he says. "I got sick. I had chronic fatigue for a year. My system completely collapsed. But I was forced to confront things about myself."

    I read other articles too and they all basically say that he was exhausted from touring and divorce and friends death and drugs etc and he took a year to rest and then was back to normal. To me his problem doesn't necessarily sound like chronic fatigue syndrome...at least not from my own experience or anyone elses that I have ever heard of. It sounds like he suffered from exhaustion. But I am not him so I don't know he very well could have had CFS but who knows.

    I hope doctors just don't give these celebrities a wrong diagnosis of CFS. That could be bad for the rest of us. Everyone will say well these people got better why can't you OR these athletes and singers etc can live normally why can't you. I wonder if some of them had chronic fatigue due to exhaustion but not chronic fatigue syndrome.

    Just a thought.

  14. jjoys

    jjoys New Member

    Stevie Nicks had/has CFS. I read it on the internet years ago. INterrupted her music career for years. She went home to Arizona to recuperate for a couple years. I think if I could afford a maid, laundress, and a housekeeper it'd really help me get well.
  15. kholmes

    kholmes New Member

    That doesn't sound like Flea had CFS.

    There is a huge difference between "Chronic Fatigue" and "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome." Too bad even NBC used the misnomer in the news report tonight, though the gist of the story was good, and it's GREAT to see publicity.

    There will probably always be naysayers. Laura Hillenbrand, to my mind, has been the best celebrity spokesperson so far in portraying how devastating the illness can be. But even though she relapsed severely after writing SEABISCUIT, I'm sure people still said, how can she be ill and write a best seller?
    [This Message was Edited on 11/02/2006]
  16. kholmes

    kholmes New Member

    I don't remember the source, but I had heard that about Gilda Radner, too.
  17. nerdieduckie

    nerdieduckie New Member

    That's really interesting about them. I wish I knew if that were true or not. My cousin loves them and has a crush on Frank Iero. Maybe it would help ONE person understand, haha.

    Thanks for the list, this was really interesting.
  18. Forebearance

    Forebearance Member

    They forgot LeeAnn Rhimes. She even admitted she had it, I believe.

    I didn't know that about Gilda Radner! Wow!

    I agree with you, jjoy.

    I think that some of those people may have persisted in their careers for a couple years on sheer willpower. I think it's possible, when you first get sick, to do that for a while.

    Like Michelle Akers, for example.

    But then eventually you hit a wall and have to give in to the illness.

    I did my own version of "iron willpower" by going to grad school when I first got sick. Now, I couldn't run to the corner, either.

    I have used up my lifetime supply of willpower.

    Thanks for the cool list! It certainly makes me feel less alone.

  19. NyroFan

    NyroFan New Member


    Really, with such a list you would think someone would step forward with a face and voice to the illness.

    I wonder why not?

  20. Callum

    Callum New Member

    She was off for six months with a "virus" they referred to as Chronic Fatigue. I know that she is not able to train the way she used to, she has to be careful not to over-extend, and every so often, like in the Australian Open final, she will get some vague stomach ailment.

    Now, maybe she does have CFS and it is just a mild case, but I don't know how she could play match after match with it, even with "taking it easy" with her training.