Heroes With Disabilities

esterday I came across a Facebook post that read “Man in Wheelchair Takes Down Convenience Store Robber”. I started thinking about how society thinks about people with disabilities. I honestly think I know several people who would stay and help if someone is need and that list includes people with disabilities. I know the post was shocking to most of the 6000+ people who had already watched the video. You can watch it on YouTube at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdLuD3BuyP8

So I decided to look in to everyday heroes with disabilities who have lighted the way for others. Many of you may know some of these people and their stories but here are some of my favorites:

1. Justin Dart is considered the father of the ADA (American with Disabilities Act).   Mr. Dart was influential in getting the law passed and had lived with polio and its complications including congestive heart failure until his death in 2002.

2. Geri Jewell is a comedian who was on the Facts of Life and the HBO series Deadwood.  Geri has lived with cerebral palsy and has been a pioneer for comedians with disabilities.  You can follow her blog at: http://gerijewell.blogspot.com/2006_10_01_archive.html

3. Helen Keller was a writer and speaker who was recognized around the world.  Helen was deaf, blind and unable to speak until her teacher Anne Sullivan taught Helen words by finger spelling words in to her palm.  Helen is one of the most famous people with disabilities to date.

4. Jack Nicklaus is  regarded as one of the best golfers of all time even though he overcame polio as a child.  He has 18 career winning championships including the Masters Tournament, U.S. Open, Open Championship and PGA Championship.

5. Ginny Owens is gospel singer who has been blind since she was a young child.  Fighting against the prejudice of people who refused to hire a music teacher who was blind.  Ginny started focusing on songwriting and producing and has won three Dove Awards (A Christian equivalent to the Grammys).

6.  Ed Roberts is considered the “father of the independent living movement”.  He was the first student with a severe disability to attend the University of California at Berkley even though he had Polio.  Hundreds of centers for independent living are based on his model.

There are many remarkable people with disabilities who have fought for rights, broken barriers and continue to be a pioneers.

Reference:
Lighting the Way. In-text: (Lighting the Way, 2010, p. 14)
Bibliography: Lighting the Way. 2010. [e-book] Hoffman Estates: p. 14. Available through: Google www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&sqi=2&ved=0CCQQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.maconresources.org%2Fuploads%2Ffiles%2FLighting%2520the%2520Way.pdf&ei=69UVU9WnGea02AW-3oDgCA&usg=AFQjCNGKr16yNyTF8Xb0s6Gpr-0-1r_YlQ&bvm=bv.62286460,d.b2I [Accessed: 4 Mar 2014].

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