'' The mystery was revealed to me. I then knew that 'w-a-t-e-r' meant the wonderful cool something that was flowing over my hand. That living word awakened my soul, gave it light, joy, set it free!!!!!.''
Helen Keller was a very bright, sensitive, and determined woman. The most remarkable thing about her was that even though she had two disabilities, she never gave up and lived a very successful life. She dedicated her life to helping people, and her greatest achievement was proving to the world that even with disabilities, anyone can achieve his or her dreams.
Helen was born in Tuscumbia, Alabama, on July 27, 1880. She was a bright and healthy child, but at the age of 19 months she became very ill and almost died. Luckily, she survived, but her life was changed forever- she was blind and deaf. Her disabilities seemed to cut her off from the world forever. Without a sight or sound, how could she communicate and learn?
Soon, she forgot the words she had learned as a toddler. She became very frustrated trying to speak and be understood. Since her family spoiled her because they felt sorry for her, she would throw tantrums to get her way and eventually grew wild. Helen never brushed her hair, threw objects, walked around eating off people's plates, and even locked her mother in the pantry. At the age of seven, Helen's family was desperate for help and hired Anne Sullivan as a private tutor. She was a teacher at the Perkins School for the Blind in Boston. "Teacher," as Helen called her, got her under control, taught her and helped her to understand how to communicate with her fingers. Helen attended Perkins School for the Blind with Anne, where she learned quickly and had an exceptional memory for details. It was there where she was known as "Miracle Child." She later graduated from Radcliffe College in 1904 with honors. She spent the rest of her life traveling the world and lecturing and raising money for the handicapped. She wrote a book about her life, and the play "The Miracle Worker" by William Gibson, won the Pulitzer Prize and was later a movie. On June 1, 1968, she died at the age of 87 while napping.
Helen Keller was an inspiration to everyone, with or without disabilities. She will always be remembered as a hero to many people throughout the world bringing light and hope to everyone.
To find out more about Helen Keller, try these great websites!!
Biography of Helen Keller
National Women's Hall of Fame: Helen Keller
Helen Keller (American Foundation for the Blind)
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