Emmanuel Kelly and his brother definitely don’t have a conventional story.
They were born in Iraq, but that’s pretty much all they know about their own births. The two brothers, who were both born with severely underdeveloped limbs, were found by nuns inside a shoebox as the Iraqi war raged on around them.
Emmanuel and his brother were abandoned by their birth mother, and there was no way they were going to get the care they needed if they were left to their own devices. The nuns brought them to an orphanage, where they continued to survive. Then, a life-changing event happens…
This woman enters their lives.
Moira Therese Kelly, an Australian humanitarian, discovers them in 1998. Moira brings them back to Australia with her, originally to provide them with medical care. But then she fell in love with them and legally adopted them, and the brothers have been Australian citizens since 2009.
Emmanuel and Ahmed thrived into adulthood with the love and support of Moira. She’s definitely a hero in their eyes, and to the rest of us, too!
The two brothers were each born with a special gift. Ahmed, the older brother, is a gifted swimmer who represented Australia at the 2012 Summer Paralympics.
Younger brother Emmanuel is a talented singer. With the encouragement of his family, Emmanuel auditioned for The X Factor at the age of 17 and brought the entire stadium to tears with his touching performance. His performance of John Lennon’s Imagine took on a whole new meaning, given his life story. Emmanuel won the hearts of millions, from just this one performance!
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