How did this happen? How did a man who is deaf end up as a finalist on "Dancing With The Stars?"
Since model Nyle DiMarco's first dance on the ABC hit, he has been an inspiration to everyone who has seen him. He's also been really, really good, despite the fact he can't even hear the music he's dancing to.
"I'm feeling honored, inspired, and relieved," he told Us Weekly on May 16 as he moved one step closer to the mirrorball trophy. "The very first week I questioned myself: Can the deaf guy make it that far against hearing people who can hear the music? And I think we deserve it. We've worked hard and pushed ourselves every week."
For a period of his dance with Peta Murgatroyd on Monday, Nyle even danced briefly with a blindfold covering his eyes.
Whether he's the odds-on favorite to actually win the the 22nd season of "DWTS" is up for debate. But, he's certainly the sentimental favorite.
The fact that he's performing so well despite his disability is nothing short of amazing. Below are six other celebrities who have overcome the odds to become stars.
Jim Carrey. After the funny man's father lost his job when Jim was just 12 years old, the family's life changed. They became homeless. "That was really a traumatic kick in the guts," he said while appearing on Inside the Actors Studio. "We lived in a van for a while. I was going to school and after school I was doing an eight-hour shift in a factory."
Hilary Swank. She too found herself homeless with her mother. The Oscar winner's struggles have been well documented. When she was 15 1/2, she and her mother, who had recently separated from Hilary's father, drove to California with no home and only $75 and gas card. They lived in the car for a couple of weeks. "We had a friend who was selling their house. And so they said, 'You know, there's no furniture, but you can stay there at night. And then, during the day, you have to leave so we can try and sell it,'" Hilary told CBS news. "So we got air mattresses. Blew the air mattresses up. Slept on the air mattresses. And left in the morning."
Jennifer Hudson. No one would have blamed J-Hud is she quit her career. In 2008, Jennifer's mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew, Julian King, were murdered by her estranged brother-in-law. In Julian's memory, J-Hud established the Julian D. King Gift Foundation to "provide stability, support, and positive experiences for children of all backgrounds," says the organization's website.
Charlize Theron. Charlize was 15 years old and living in a volatile household. Her father was abusive and an alcoholic. "Was" being the key word. As a teenage, Charlize witnessed her mother Gerda shoot and kill her father Charles after he abused and threatened the two women, allegedly drunkenly wielding a gun as he came after them. "It was the great tragedy of my life," she said. Now she's an Oscar-winning actress.
Stevie Wonder. Stevie has been blind since birth but that hasn't stopped him from becoming an icon. Without being able to see, he has mastered the piano and gone on to record 30 U.S. top ten hits and receive 25 Grammy Awards. In 2013, Billboard ranked him sixth on the All Time artists list.
Bethany Hamilton. She was a bit of surfing prodigy as a youngster. Then came Oct. 31, 2003. Then 13 years old, Bethany was attacked by a shark while surfing and her arm was severed just below the shoulder. Determined to surf still, she returned to the water three weeks later with one arm. She's surfed in multiple competitions since, even placing first in some of them. She wrote a book about her experience, which was later made into a Hollywood movie, "Soul Surfer."
- May. 27, 2017 See all the stars at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival!