Former Massachusetts First Lady Ann Romney has not been shy about sharing her struggle with multiple sclerosis, a neurological disease she learned she had in 1998.
"When I was first diagnosed, I thought life was over, I really did," she admits.
Romney credits great doctors, a healthy lifestyle and a renewed passion for horseback riding for her remission.
Now Ann Romney has made it her mission to draw attention to and accelerate the cure for MS and 4 other neurological diseases, Alzheimer's, ALS, Parkinson's and brain tumors.
Romney was one of the headliners at a three day conference in Boston focused on medical innovation and neurosciences.
Last fall, the Ann Romney Center for Neurologic diseases was launched at Brigham and Women's hospital.
Now Romney has announced a social media campaign, #50MillionFaces.
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It is a place where those affected by the diseases and their loved ones can share their stories in the hopes of starting a global discussion.
Romney got emotional as she described her experience in 2008 on the campaign trail with her husband, Mitt Romney, then the Republican presidential nominee, as she spoke of the people in the front row of events she often saw clinging to the rope lines.
"And I knew who they were. They were people with MS and they had been there for hours and hours, waiting, just to say thank you to me for being an example to them," Romney said. "Very often, when they would see me, they would collapse because they'd physically, they had been holding it all together."
Romney has watched as great strides have been made in breast cancer treatment, heart disease and AIDs - now she says it is time for neurological diseases.
"We have to give hope to these people, we have to give a promise that something is coming."