Hollywood’s hottest Latina, Sofia Vergara has stolen the hearts of millions. Not only is she beautiful but her quirky personality makes her the definition of “the whole package.” However, before fame, love, and fortune, this star went through tight obstacles. Gangs, bad-boys, and unfortunately illness took her life through wild ups and downs that most people wouldn’t be able to overcome. Through it all, Vergara remained a fighter. The story of her strength makes her success an even bigger deal. Heres the story of how one woman beat all odds.

1. A Star Was Born

Sofia Margarita Vergara was born on July 10, 1979. Vergara is one of five siblings, and was given the nickname “La Toti.”

2. She Began to Blossom

As the model grew into a bodacious beauty, classmates began calling her “La Tetas” (the boobs) instead of “La Toti.”

3. The Original Plan

The gorgeous Colombiana began studying dentistry after high school. She planned to practice in Colombia, but with looks like hers, plans can change real fast!

4. Mirricle Day at the Beach

The dentistry student dropped out of school after being scouted by a model agent on the beach. It was the encounter that would change her life forever.

5. Officially a Model

Her beauty was so unique that the scout realized he had to sign Vergara to the agency ASAP! He convinced her to drop everything to come work with him.

6. First Ever Gig

17-year-old Vergara took the agency by surprise. Impressed by her looks, they chose her to model in a Pepsi commercial. Everyone loved it!

7. The Face of Pepsi

It was the first of many. Vergara continued working with Pepsi late in her career. In an interview she joked that the second time she signed with the soda company, she asked for a lot more cash than the first!

8. First Love

At 18 years old she married her high school sweetheart Joe Gonzalez. Together they had a son Manolo, but their love didn’t last long.

9. Single Teen Mom

Young mama Vergara and Gonzalez divorced shortly after Manolo was born.

10. Building Her Career

Sofia continued her modeling career in Colombia for a couple years. This is the superstar in a photo shoot at age 20, a year after giving birth!

11. The Fear

Sofia starred in a couple of Novellas but was distracted by her fear of falling victim to gang violence.

12. A Target for Danger

Between her fame and her family’s success, Sofia became a target for Colombian gangsters.

13. The Big Move

Vergara went viral in the latin community and was asked to move to Miami to host a TV show, she immediately agreed.

14. Fear Became Reality

In 1998 her worst nightmare came true, her brother Rafael was tragically gunned down by Colombian gang members. He was only 27 years old.

15. Miami Was The Right Decision

Vergara felt Miami was the safest option for her son and the rest of her family but her involvement with gangs didn’t end when her 305 life began.

16. Bad-Boy Obsessi0n

Vergara is known for her interest in the “bad-boy” type. She started dating Chris Paciello, a mob-affiliated Miami club owner.

17. Unexpected Diagnosis

Two years after her brother’s murdered Vergara was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. “I felt totally healthy, and suddenly they tell me I have cancer?” Vergara told Parade magazine. “I was scared.”

18. From Sickness to Health

Luckily her sickness was caught at an early stage. Sofia survived cancer after treatment and thyroid removal surgery. She’s been an advocate for finding a cure for cancer ever since.

19. Her Boyfriend’s Dark Side

At the same time of her diagnoses, Chris Paciello’s dark side was revealed. He was heavily involved in mob activities and was known for his multiple burglaries earning him the nickname “the binger” Chris was accused of murder.

20. What She Did for Love

The gorgeous model believed in her man and put up her house for Chris’s $15 million bail. Paciello let Sofia down. He pleaded guilty to the murder charges. The two split when he went to jail.

21. Staying Strong

Despite the turmoil, Vergara stayed strong and climbed up the latter of fame and fortune.

22. Busy & Romantic

It was no doubt this hot actress-model would bounce right back. After a few more romantic flings with celebrity “bad-boys,” Vergara landed a lead role in the hit TV series “Modern Family.”

23. The Perfect Role

She plays the Hilarious role of a hot young Colombian mama who married a much-older man who has kids around her age. Vergara was perfect for the part, getting anyone who watched the show to laugh.

24. Life Balance

After overcoming all the unexpected obstacles in her way, Vergara is finally at the best point in her life.

25. Finally, A Good Guy

Her recent chiseled boyfriend, Joe Manganiello, purposed to her in Hawaii after only six months of dating. According to close friends, Vergara is head over heels in love.

26. Put a Ring on It!

Joe Manganiello knew this woman’s worth and made sure to get her a ring that would prove it!

27. Tying the Knot

The two beautiful people got married, and the rest is history. A close friend of Vergara says; “She’s found her dream guy. After all the ups and downs she’s had, she truly deserves this.” Popular Everything agrees!

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