Johnny Ruffo – No Finish Line
Johnny Ruffo came to Australia’s attention when he entered The X Factor in 2011. A concreter with a cheeky smile and long-held passion for music, he won millions of hearts and eventually placed third. Sony Music rushed to sign him up and he was offered a guest spot on Australia’s favourite soap, Home and Away, which turned into a three-year role. But the sudden rise to fame took its toll.
Johnny found it hard to resist the weekend-long parties, drugs, alcohol and fair-weather friends that came with the territory. He had started suffering from severe headaches when his girlfriend, Tahnee, noticed something was also wrong with his speech. Johnny was rushed to hospital, where doctors prepped him for immediate surgery to deal with a 7-centimetre-long tumour.
Johnny was ultimately diagnosed with a rare brain cancer, with which – despite a period of remission – he still battles today. But in a strange way Johnny thinks the cancer actually saved his life…