Lanterman Center Closure Ends an Era

Madeline Smyres did not think her daughter Nina would live past 6. In the early 1960s, doctors told her that even if Nina outlived their prediction, her scoliosis, an affliction of the joints, and excess fluid around her brain would turn the child into a “vegetable.”

Today, Nina is 50 years old, constrained by her disability but alive and alert. She’s taken trips to Lakers and Dodgers games, shopped at her favorite store, Macy’s, and traveled to bowling meets with the Special Olympics.

“When she turned 50, it finally hit me that she’s not going [to die] before me,” Smyres, 70, said. “She’s lived a whole, amazing life.” Read more.