Aleteia logoAleteia logoAleteia
Sunday 19 May |
The Solemnity of Pentecost
Aleteia logo
Inspiring Stories
separateurCreated with Sketch.

Actor Kevin Nealon’s inspiring plea for friend in need

Actor Kevin Nealon

Shutterstock | Kathy Hutchins

Kevin Nealon

Cerith Gardiner - published on 06/16/23

The kind comedian highlights the incredible strength of a friend who is truly suffering.

You might be familiar with the actor and comedian Kevin Nealon from his roles in comedies such as Blended and Father of the Year.

However, far from the Hollywood lights, Nealon, who was raised a Catholic and received a Catholic education, is also using his fame to help others in need.

Recently, the dad-of-one shared a cause that was close to his heart on his Twitter account.

In his comment, the actor took the time to explain what his friend Reggie Bibbs, whom he describes as “the kindest and most loving person I have ever met,” has been through while coping with a severe facial disfigurement caused by neurofibromatosis — a genetic disease that causes tumors to grow on the nerve tissues.

While the disorder has a noticeable visual impact — including a 49-pound tumor on Bibbs’ left leg — a person living with neurofibromatosis often has to endure many other difficulties, such as problems with vision, impaired skeletal growth, neurological difficulties, potential cancerous tumors, issues with breathing, and many more.

And as Nealon explained in his Tweet, Bibbs has not only had to struggle with his physical differences that left him stuck in his bedroom, but also with some harrowing personal issues, including the loss of his beloved mother.

An extraordinary spirit

However, this has not stopped the 58-year-old from keeping up his “extraordinary spirit” and believing “something better was coming,” as the funny man was quick to share.

In highlighting Bibbs’ challenges, Nealon is hoping that people might help out with the fundraiser mentioned in his Tweet that will give the courageous “Reggie B” some housing security.

Incredibly the GoFundMe has already surpassed its initial goal of $133,000, and hopefully with the friendship and support of people like Nealon, Bibbs can continue to see all the joy that life can offer, even when the daily challenges might seem insurmountable.

A bit of kindness

A man with the same condition as Bibbs gained an international spotlight after Pope Francis eagerly embraced him at an audience shortly after Francis’ election to the Chair of Peter.

“I felt I was returning home 10 years younger, as if a load had been lifted,” Vinicio Riva said of his meeting with the Pope.

His aunt, who accompanied Riva to the audience, said of the encounter: “[H]e went straight to Vinicio and embraced him tightly. I thought he wouldn’t give him back to me he held him so tightly. We didn’t speak. We said nothing but he looked at me as if he was digging deep inside, a beautiful look that I would never have expected.”

Tags:
CelebritiesHealth and WellnessInspiring stories
Enjoying your time on Aleteia?

Articles like these are sponsored free for every Catholic through the support of generous readers just like you.

Help us continue to bring the Gospel to people everywhere through uplifting Catholic news, stories, spirituality, and more.

Aleteia-Pilgrimage-300×250-1.png
Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.