Over the summer, hundreds of young people applied for Local 10's Summer Service Awards. Thursday, we introduced a boy from Hialeah Gardens who is no stranger to Local 10.
Manny Loeb and his mother were featured in a story in 2009 right after he had his 25th surgery. His mother had donated her own skin to help him heal.
Loeb has a rare genetic condition that causes his bones to be deformed, so he has been in and out of the hospital since he was born.
Despite having his own hardships, this 15-year-old lives by the slogan "making a difference while being different."
Recently, Loeb organized a walk-a-thon to raise money and awareness for other children with rare diseases. It's one of the many ways that he has worked to make sure kids like him are not forgotten.
"There's fruit for major things like breast cancer and diabetes, and down syndrome and what not, but you don't hear a lot about rare diseases foundations, so that's why we did that," he said.
Loeb works closely with his friends at the Hialeah Gardens Police Department to make sure that his ideas become a reality.
"Having a disability shouldn't stop you from helping others or creating your dreams or being able to function in a way that you can be helpful to others," said Manuel Carrera with the Hialeah Gardens Police Department.
Loeb also started another project, which entails collecting bottle caps. The recycling money goes directly to kids with rare diseases.
"I just like helping others and putting a smile on their face puts a smile on mine also," he added.