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Children's Health

‘So You Think You Can Dance’ finalist surprises girl with rare disease

  • Madison Smith and Tiffany MaherWSVN-TV

  • Tiffany MaherFox.com/dance

A finalist on the hit FOX show “So You Think You Can Dance” paid a visit to a little girl suffering from spinal muscular atrophy, WSVN TV reported.

Tiffany Maher, 19, who is originally from Plantation, Fla., and is a student at the University of Central Florida, went to Broadway Kids Studio in Markhum Park Saturday, where Madison Smith was waiting to meet her.

According to the National Institutes of Health, SMA causes muscle damage and weakness that will eventually lead to death. There is no treatment for the disease.

Madison was diagnosed with SMA four years ago, and the 5-year-old is unable to use her legs.

Madison’s mother, Jennifer Smith, said her daughter has been following Maher’s journey on the TV show and considers her one of her idols.

“My heart was so happy, and I just started crying because I could see the look on Madison’s face,” Smith said. “She was just so happy.”

Maher called Madison “an inspiration to everybody.”

“It was incredible being here today,” she added. “The smile on her face when I look at her is just incredible.”

Madison told Maher “if she was out of the wheelchair, (she would) dance and do cartwheels.”

Click here for more from WSVN.