Jamie Foxx: His Sister, The Real Star With Down’s Syndrome

People Magazine

Actor, musician, funnyman…there are only a few things that superstar Jamie Foxx can’t do.  But if you ask him who’s the real star of the family, he’ll quickly point to his younger sister, DeOndra Dixon. DeOndra was born with Down’s Syndrome, the genetic disorder typically associated with physical growth delays, characteristic facial features, and mild to moderate intellectual disability.

“She speaks her mind and knows that there’s nothing she can’t do,” shares Jamie. “She has such a special quality, and she can light up a room. I don’t know where she gets it. It’s amazing.”

Here’s how Jamie describes her as the true star in the family.

“When I’m doing the music video for ‘Blame It On The Alcohol’, my sister say, ‘Big Bro, you gonna let me get down in the video, right? I want to dance in the video’ So we’re shooting and it’s getting late, so she says again, ‘Big bro, don’t forget about me.’ So we’re there and everybody’s there Quincy Jones, Samuel L. Jackson, etc. Long story short, she killed the video. Quincy sees the video and says ‘I want to connect you to the National Down Syndrome foundation.’ He does and my sister becomes their official ambassador. She goes everywhere, she been to Congress. She’s the star. She’s amazing.'”

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“She is a huge part of Jamie’s life,” says longtime family friend Hanna Abounader. “He will be running around crazy with all these things to do, and DeOndra will walk up, grab him and hug him, and he’ll stand there for 10 minutes hugging her. It brings tears to your eyes.” For Foxx, it is a sibling bond that brings both rewards and challenges. “One thing people may not understand is that the person with special needs, the love that they give you is unfiltered,” he says. “There is nothing in the way of them loving you and there is nothing in the way of them being upset with you either. You really get the true individual. It’s challenging, but it is moments like this that make it all work. She’s a superstar now.”

“He works on me every day about my eating habits,” DeOndra tells People.com. He nods his head. “That’s the challenge, because we want to extend her life. It’s tough because she is grown, and she says, ‘I’m eatin’ it!’ It’s not always glory, it’s not always glamorous. Sometimes…