BLACK VOICES
10/03/2013 05:45 pm ET

Obamacare Activist, Marcelas Owens, Expresses Pride In Realizing His Affordable Healthcare Dream

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Marcelas Owens has had extraordinary experiences in his lifetime.

At age eight, he lost his mother and responded to his heartbreaking loss by becoming a young activist fighting for universal healthcare. At age 11, he stood next to the president as Obama signed the Affordable Care Act in 2010. Now at age 14, he saw the program launched on Oct. 1.

The young Seattle native spoke with MSNBC host Chris Hayes, reflecting on his hard work, his mother's fight and seeing it all come to fruition with the start of Obamacare.

"I'm feeling really good because today is where you can actually see the effect of all of the hard work that everyone has been doing," Owens said. "This is like the stepping stone, like the first piece of change that's going to be happening. And so many people are going to be benefitting from this, I don't even think a lot of people realize."

Owens grabbed the nation's attention in 2010, when he told a crowded room of reporters his story and why he wanted Congress to come together and pass healthcare reform.

"I am here because of my mom," Owens said. "My mom was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension in 2006. She missed so much work she lost her job. And when my mom lost her job, she lost her health care. And losing her health care ended up costing her her life."

He continued, "I don't want any other kids to go through the pain that our family has gone through. My grandma and I want Barack Obama and Congress and everybody to come together and to help get the health care bill passed."

Obamacare is especially helpful for the minority community, since African Americans make up a a wildly disproportionate number of Americans who lack access to adequate healthcare.

Watch the 14-year-old discuss his feeling about the historic launch in the clip above.

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