Frankie Abernathy

Frankie Abernathy

Infobox Person
name = Frankie Abernathy


image_size = 180px
caption = Frankie from The Real World: San Diego
birth_date = December 21, 1981
birth_place = Kansas City, Missouri, USA
death_date = death date and age|2007|6|9|1981|12|21
death_place = Shorewood, Wisconsin, USA
sex = Female
occupation = Purse designer
website =
footnotes =

Frankie Jo Abernathy (December 21, 1981June 9, 2007) was a castmate on MTV's "". Hailing from Kansas City, Abernathy was the elder daughter of Abbie Hunter and Joe Abernathy. She had a younger sister named Mamie, and a stepfather, Perry Hunter. She attended Blue Springs High School in Blue Springs, Missouri.

"The Real World: San Diego"

MTV's promotional materials described Abernathy as someone who "likes to shock people with her appearance, date bad boys, party all night and dreams of being an artist." She was known for her taste in punk rock music, and her fondness for Hello Kitty.

The first housemate Abernathy greeted was Jacquese Smith, with whom she first entered the "Real World" house, and with whom MTV believes she may have been the closest during their stay there. [http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1562550/20070614/id_0.jhtml Harris, Chris; "Real World: San Diego" Cast Says Frankie Abernathy 'Lived Every Day To The Fullest'"; mtv.com; June 15, 2007] ]

Abernathy suffered from cystic fibrosis, with which she was diagnosed at the age of three, and during her time on "The Real World", she showed many symptoms of the genetic disorder, such as difficulty breathing and immune-system impairment. Her disease was a significant part of her storyline on the show. Regarding living with cystic fibrosis (less than half of whose sufferers live to the age of 37), one of Abernathy's sayings was, "Tomorrow is a privilege, so live today like tomorrow isn't happening."

Abernathy ended up leaving the show before the end of the season, due to conflict with her roommates and the strain of separation from her boyfriend at the time, tattoo artist and musician Dave Duly.

After "The Real World"

After leaving the show, Abernathy spent her time working at numerous retail outlets in Kansas City, working tattoo conventions with the Art Intensity Network, getting more tattoos, and spending time with her loved ones. She also graced the cover of the May 2005 issue of "Prick", a tattoo magazine. [ [http://www.prickmag.net/frankiefeature.html Liquor, Clint; "Frankie, From MTV's Real World San Diego"; prickmag.net; May 2005.] ]

Abernathy moved to Shorewood, Wisconsin with her family in the fall of 2006. She began designing purses forged from old vinyl records, though she did not work full time. According to her mother, winter is a difficult time for people with the chronic lung disease, but the 2006 winter had been particularly problematic for Abernathy. Her illness had been worse than in prior winters, and the family considered trying to get Abernathy qualified to appear on a lung transplant list.

Abernathy died suddenly at her mother's home on June 9, 2007, at the age of 25. An official cause of death has not yet been determined. She is the second alumnus of the "The Real World" to die, after Pedro Zamora. As with Zamora's struggle with AIDS, Abernathy is credited, according to MTV.com, with helping to raise national awareness of cystic fibrosis, and putting a face on the disease. Abernathy's housemates Jacquese Smith and Jamie Chung were particularly devastated by her passing. Abernathy's mother, Abbie Hunter, said about her time on the show:

A scholarship has been set up in her name at her alma mater, Blue Springs High School. [ [http://www.realitytvworld.com/news/real-world-san-diego-cast-member-frankie-abernathy-dead-at-25-5328.php Rogers, Steve & Rocchio, Christopher; "Real World: San Diego' cast member Frankie Abernathy dead at 25"; realityworld.com; June 12, 2007] ] [ [http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1562302/20070612/id_0.jhtml Harris, Chris; "'Real World: San Diego' Alum Frankie Abernathy Dead At 25: Housemate's struggle with cystic fibrosis was featured on 2004 show."; mtv.com; June 12, 2007] ]

References


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