Knoxville 'Rising Star' shares battle with Cystic Fibrosis

Kathryn Norris is one of ten people awarded the Rising Star award. / Source: WVLT News
Kathryn Norris is one of ten people awarded the Rising Star award. / Source: WVLT News(WVLT)
Published: Jan. 18, 2020 at 5:34 PM EST
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Kathryn Norris was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis at 3-years-old. After having a liver and lung transplant, she became a personal trainer to help others take control of their health.

Norris has since been recognized as a 'Rising Star' a title awarded by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to individuals around Knoxville that exemplify leadership qualities.

"I've received so much love and I know other people don't receive the amount of love I was given-so if I can give a little of it back to other people that's just enough for me."

Kathryn's battle with CF started when she was 3-years-old, but it kicked into high gear in her teen years when she was admitted to the hospital for pneumonia.

"It was all of a sudden, I started needing like 15 liters of oxygen - just gasping for air in the ICU like three times," said Norris. "I was there for a month, pretty much like three weeks to a month just fighting for my life."

When Kathryn was 22-years-old she received a life-saving lung and liver transplant. Through all of her obstacles with CF, she never let being sick slow her down.

"I joined the dance team, the choir, philanthropy groups and I worked part-time, so I think I really over-pushed myself also taking 18 credit hours a semester, thinking I could manage it and I could," said Norris. "I think back and I'm like how in the world could I do all that with like 23 percent lung function."

Kathryn is now a full-time personal trainer at National Fitness Center of Maryville. She said this is her way of keeping herself healthy while encouraging others to take control of their own health. Kathryn is one of 10 people chosen to receive the Rising Star Award at the annual

, at The Press Room.

Copyright 2020 WVLT. All rights reserved.

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