When news of Mama Cāx’s passing reached the ESSENCE office we were reeling. This young beauty stepped into our lives (with a prosthetic leg nonetheless) and she changed our hearts.

A blogger, model, and advocate, Cāx, nee Cacsmy Brutus, brought models with disabilities to the forefront of an industry rooted in appearance, beauty, and exclusivity.

“What you have may not be celebrated in magazines, but you should still love it,” she told ESSENCE. “I know it’s easy to say, ‘Just love what you have,’ but essentially that’s what it comes down to.”

The Haitian-native will be missed and remembered through her extraordinary work. We salute Cāx and celebrate her through these 20 breathtaking beauty photos she’s given us over the past few years.

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