Sophia Weaver

Posted by The Arc of North Carolina

We were saddened to learn of the passing of Sophia Weaver. She was known as “Sweet Sophia” and her mom, Natalie Weaver, is a tireless advocate for the rights of individuals with disabilities.

Natalie and SophiaBorn with facial deformities, Sophia was diagnosed at an early age with Rett syndrome which is a neurological disorder that hinders development of the brain. In her short life of ten years, she endured 30 surgeries and multiple stays in the hospital. But Natalie said Sophia is “the strongest person that I know”.

She became the target of online bullying and when her family took her out into the community, people would stare or make cruel statements. When Sophia became the target of online trolls via Twitter, Natalie worked to ensure that Twitter included disability as an option when reporting a tweet that is deemed offensive.

Natalie has become outspoken when talking about the rights of people with disabilities. She has been interviewed by multiple news outlets and taken part in press events on Capitol Hill.

We were fortunate to have Natalie as a keynote speaker at our 2019 Rooted in Advocacy conference. Natalie spoke of her family, the love they have for Sophia, and the importance of being an advocate.

The Arc of North Carolina sends love, support, and prayers to Natalie, her husband Mark, their family, and to all who knew Sophia. We will continue to advocate for people like Sophia and tell their stories.