RALEIGH, N.C. — A Raleigh man with vitiligo is teaming up with men across the state to raise awareness about the disease.

According to MedlinePlus, vitiligo is a condition that causes someone to lose pigment in patches on their skin. For Terrell Midgett, that process started in elementary school.

"It started on my fingers, and I didn't know what it was. It started spreading a little bit all the way up my index finger," Midgett recalled. "By the time I was in middle school, it got around my face and my eyes."

Now, Midgett has lost all his pigment besides what looks like freckles. 

He said the little things that others say and do can make living with vitiligo difficult.

"When you're sitting out eating dinner with your wife or playing with your kids you have to deal with that abuse from people saying negative things," Midgett said. "I've heard things as far as being called a cow. I've been called Black face. I've been called all types of stuff man. And, you sit here and you ignore it, but it still hurts. It cuts deep."

Midgett's friend Ben Brown lives in Nashville, Perry Whaley lives in Atlanta, and Andre Joachim from Chicago. They are all coming together to be a support system for each other. They also are uniting to make moves in the vitiligo community.

They will be launching an online campaign to raise awareness as we get closer to World Vitiligo Day on June 25. They are also lobbying congress for a National Vitiligo Awareness Day.

"We have, in the vitiligo community, Vitfriends, Vitiligo Bond, V-Strong," Midgett said. "We want to be able to group all the operations together and have one force to fulfill what the vitiligo community needs."

He said it starts with them.

How to appropriately address someone with vitiligo is up to the individual. However, stopping rude and ignorant comments about the disease is a start for what community members can do.