Just a few mornings later I was behind him again. This time I could sense that a miracle had happened! With his long cane and head held high, eyes forward, he looked like a young man. He had been at the WBRC only a short time but the place had already worked its magic with, of course, the expertise and work of Orientation and Mobility instructors. I left the Center very shortly after this incident but I knew that George was on his way. I knew he would continue to hold his head high.
I was gratified by the many events at the WBRC and the additional miracles I saw over and over. I hope that someday I can return and see all of the wonderful people again. I could literally go on forever about the time I spent in Palo Alto.
It wasn't all work and no play. There were plans made and carried out on the weekends. We piled into buses and went to fine restaurants. We also walked on the Golden Gate Bridge and visited the San Jose Science Museum. Lunch, if not at a restaurant, was in a box provided to us by the WBRC. All was at no cost to us.
A big band came once a month to provide music for dancing. It was accompanied by a spread of food, a punch bowl, and still another plate of small but assorted snacks. There was a wonderful feeling among us all that we were very special guests.
I hope I have given you an idea of what I experienced during my 11 weeks at the WBRC. I continue to feel the same joy as I communicate with my newly found friends who are now my email buddies!
Editor’s Note: Now 87 and legally blind due to Macular Degeneration, Millie Saks lived in Washington, DC, during the first two years of World War II. She worked for the Carrier Corporation as a secretary. Carrier at the time supplied air conditioners for submarines. The “bug to enlist” overcame Millie after her 21st birthday. She joined the U.S. Coast Guard Women’s Reserve and was first stationed in Palm Beach, Florida, followed by a transfer to the New York Personnel Office. Millie was discharged following marriage to an Airman stationed in Fresno, California, during her first leave of absence.
Joy at the
by Steve Baskis
Just last year, as many of you already know, I lost my sight in the Middle East as I served in the United States Army. At that point in my life, it was my dream to be a part of the famed Green Berets or the Army’s Special Forces. I looked forward to the challenges of the future and I thought I knew what they would be.
But, when you serve in a dangerous place, you can never lose your concentration or take your mind off of what you are doing, not for a minute or even a second. You never know what may be lurking around the corner, as was the case for me on May 13, 2008.
Now, a year and a half after the blast, I am doing very well. Nevertheless, the challenges I expected before my injuries have been of a very different nature, and it has been a long road. In the first place, I literally fought for my survival during the first couple of weeks at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Then there were white cane and other mental and emotional frustrations at the Central Blind Rehabilitation Center at Hines.
All the while, I received tremendous amounts of support from family, friends, and organizations. But that’s not all—there’s so much more. I met the greatest person alive, someone