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And if they didn't, he'd live for
five more, and keep going until
they find a cure."

John, who stayed at the hospi
tal with the Whites nearly a
week, dedicated the song "Can
dle in the Wind" to White during
the Farm Aid IV concert Satur
day night at the Hoosier Dome,
about a mile from the hospital.

"This one's for Ryan," John
said to cheers of 45,000 fans at
the concert to raise funds for fi
nancially troubled farmers.

President Bush, who last week
planted a tree in White's honor in
downtown Indianapolis, said he
and first lady Barbara were
"deeply saddened" by White's
death.

"Ryan's death reaffirms that
we as a people must pledge to
continue the fight, his fight,
against this dreaded disease,"
Bush said.

White, born Dec. 16, 1971, in
Kokomo, was 13 when he was
diagnosed with AIDS in
December 1984. He had con
tracted acquired immune defi
ciency syndrome through a
blood-clotting agent used to treat
his hemophilia.

In 1985, White was barred from
Western Middle School near
Kokomo after school officials and
parents rejected health
authorities' assurances that
AIDS cannot be spread through
casual contact.

After months of school board
battles and court hearings, White
won the right to attend school.
But pressures on his family later
drove the Whites to the town of
Cicero, and he enrolled at
Hamilton Heights High School in
nearby Arcadia.

White became a national
spokesman for children with
AIDS, appearing at congres
sional hearings and fund-raisers,
and the story of his life was told
in a 1989 made-for-TV movie.

In 1988, White spoke before the
National Education Association
and discussed his battle with
AIDS.

"I stand before you to ask for
your help," White told the teach
ers. "The many people against
me said they weren't against me,
but against my disease. Help me
beat the odds and together let's
educate and save the children of
the world. By proper education,
AIDS can be a disease, not a dirty
word."

Dr. Woodrow A Myers Jr.,
health commissioner of Indiana
during White's legal struggle,
said White was chosen to lead the
nation out of ignorance and
hatred of people with AIDS.

"This young man made a dif
ference that may never again be
achieved," Myers said.
"Through his actions and his
eyes he taught us about
well the lessons were learned."

White's last public appearance
was March 26 at an Oscar party
for ill children in Los Angeles
with former President Reagan
and his wife, Nancy.

Gov. Evan Bayh, who ordered
flags at the Statehouse flown at
half-staff Wednesday in White's
honor, called the youth "an
American hero" in a letter to
Mrs. White.

"AIDS brought him to public
attention, but his courage made
him special. We can hope and
pray that his family finds peace
and consolation in the fact that,
had the world not known Ryan
White, our understanding,
treatment and concern for people
with AIDS would be harsher and
more judgmental."

Funeral services were sched
uled for Wednesday, but ar
rangment were incomplete.
***

EDITOR'S NOTE -- Contributions to theRyan
White Fund for theCare of Childhood Infections
may be sent to the Indiana University Foundation
in care of Indian University Hospital in In
dianapolis. Cards to the family can be sent to P.O.
Box 40, Noblesville, Ind. 46060.

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