TV personality Reggie Bird, who won Big Brother twice, has taken to social media to share tragic news.
The 48-year-old told her thousands of followers that she had recently been diagnosed with Usher syndrome, a condition that affects sight and hearing.
Bird was first declared legally blind in 2008 following her diagnosis with retinitis pigmentosa (RP), and has now shared news that she said was “the worst thing you could have”.
“It’s not what I wanted to hear,” Bird said in a video shared online, with clips showing her in an interview and in August when she received her diagnosis.
“I’m gonna find out today what my link is for my RP. I had my DNA taken 13 years ago and it’s just been found what the genetic link will be,” she explains in the clip.
After being told that she has Ushers syndrome, Bird fought back tears.
“It’s the worst thing that you could have. I’m going to be deaf-blind.”
According to Cleveland Clinic, Ushers syndrome is a genetic condition that causes varying degrees of hearing and vision loss, as well as balance issues in some cases.
After shooting to stardom following her 2003 win, Bird’s condition worsened. In 2014, she revealed that she had no peripheral vision and that her field of vision had become constricted to only 10 degrees.
Earlier this year, she made her return to TV on Big Brother’s ‘Contenders vs Royalty’ season and won once again, taking home another $250,000 in prize money.
“I’m honestly so proud of myself for going in and doing what I did and having a go,” Bird said after her second win.
“I just wanted to show people who do live with disabilities that you can get out there and achieve anything that you put your mind to.
“I’m so proud to represent people with a disability.”
Since making her announcement, Bird took to social media again to thank fans for their support.
“A s**t announcement really, finding out that I’ve got Ushers syndrome,” she said.
“But, you know, life goes on and you’ve gotta make the most of each day and I’m gonna have so fun and I’m gonna get fit again.
“Love you all, and thank you for listening.”
Image: @reggiebirdbb (Instagram)
This article first appeared on OverSixty.