“Shannon Tavarez, the 11-year-old who played Young Nala in Broadway’s “Lion King,” has died…,”ABC News reports.
She had leukemia.
According to the article, “More than 8,000 people from around the country, including the rapper 50 Cent, volunteered to be bone marrow donors in her name, but no match ever was found.
“The fact that Shannon, who had no siblings, was part African-American and part Hispanic made it harder to find a bone marrow transplant. Of the 7 million Americans listed as potential donors, only 12 percent are minorities, according to DKMS Americas.”
The story also said that “Tavarez got the role of Simba’s girlfriend in the popular musical after her first-ever open audition at the Apollo Theater in Harlem. She never had appeared in a professional production, only in school recitals and plays.
Her mother said her daughter was “the feisty, fierce lion. She really fears nothing.”