Cindy Crawford is an American model, actress, and businesswoman. During the 1980s and 1990s, Crawford was among the most popular supermodels and a ubiquitous presence on magazine covers, runways, and fashion campaigns. Her years of successful modeling career made her an international celebrity that have led to subsequent acting and business ventures.
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When Cindy Crawford was very young, a tragic event became a formative experience that shaped the rest of her life. She was just 8 when her 2-year-old brother Jeff was diagnosed with leukemia. When she was 9, Jeff passed away. Crawford said that this horrific event taught her to grieve at a young age. She recalled to InStyle, “No one knows what to say to you … because as a society we are so uncomfortable talking about death and grief.”
Cindy Crawford was born Cynthia Ann Crawford in DeKalb, Illinois on Feb. 20, 1966. Her father, John, and her mother, Jennifer, were childhood sweethearts. For a time, Cindy Crawford’s “all-American upbringing” was pretty mundane. However, her parents divorced when she was in high school, and her family struggled to make ends meet. Crawford explained that she saw her father controlling her mother financially by withholding money week by week. This experience led to Crawford’s firm resolve to earn her own living. She explained her thinking at the time, saying, “I’m never going to be her.”
As a teenager, she worked on local farms “cleaning and shucking corn.” However, she quickly found that modeling jobs were also a lucrative option. Crawford explained to Marie Claire, “When I started modeling, I [treated] it like a job, not a lifestyle.” This professional, level-headed approach (which stemmed from her early financial difficulties) has since become famous.