Harrison Ford opens up about daughter's epilepsy battle: 'She's my hero'
"When you have a loved one who suffers from this disease, it can be devastating."
He has given the moviegoing public many memorable roles including Indiana Jones and Han Solo, but veteran actor has had his share of personal struggles.
Speaking to the New York Daily news, he opened up about how much he admires his daughter for her perseverance as she battles the chronic disorder of epilepsy.
"She is joining me to thank FACES. I admire a lot of things about her. I admire her perseverance, her talent, her strength. She's my hero. I love her," Harrison saidat the NYU Langone Medical Center's Find a Cure for Epilepsy and Seizures (FACES) event.
Georgia is Harrison's daughter with his second wife, screenwriter Melissa Mathison.
He commended the said organization for being a great service to his family. "I am grateful for that," adds Harrison. "So I'm happy to be here."
In a speech he delivered at Chelsea Piers on the same day, he revealed the difficulties their family faced in the beginning. They struggled to get Georgia diagnosed.
She suffered her first epileptic seizure while she was at a friend's house for a sleepover. The initial treatment given to her was medication usually prescribed for acute migraines.
Georgia has been seizure-free for 8 years
"A few years later she had another big one, this one on a beach in Malibu, where a Hollywood director found her, luckily," he recounts. "I said to myself this is Los Angeles, we have some of the best doctors in the world, they must know what's wrong with her. But nothing was diagnosed as epilepsy."
She suffered yet another attack while she was in school in London.
"Dr. Orrin Devinsky, who is a dear friend, made the diagnosis: epilepsy," Harrison recounts, in tears. "He prescribed the right medication and therapy; she has not had a seizure in eight years."
"When you have a loved one who suffers from this disease, it can be devastating. You know how it affects their lives, their future, their opportunities and you want desperately to find mitigation," shares the veteran actor. "You want to find a way that they can live a comfortable and effective life."
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