Ben Underwood

by Skyler from Spanish Fork

 ( (The Creater of the Webpage))
( (The Creater of the Webpage))

Have you ever imagined how hard life would be to have a physical disability such as being blind? Waking up every morning and opening your eyes then still seeing darkness. Trying to do mundane tasks such as walking up the stairs, eating cereal, or playing with your dog. Or even seeing your family and friends when you are trying to talk to them. For me it's incomprehensible how challenging life would be for someone who lost the sense to see. But it's not for Ben Underwood who can see even though he is blind. I respect and admire Ben for his persistence to overcome his handicap; He is my hero.

Born a very healthy baby, on January 26th, Ben had his whole life ahead of him and he was all but ready to embrace it. His mother started noticing a slight discoloration of his right eye, so she took him to a optometrist and found out that there was a possibility her baby had a tumor. It was detrimental for his mother, Aquanetta. Once they got Ben tested, they found out that there was cancer that was consuming his eyes, soon after he lost both eyes to chemotherapy. Ben woke up from his eye removal surgery and said to his mom, "Mom i can't see anymore, Mom I can't see!" She turned to him and told him, "But you can see, you can. With your hands and your nose and your mouth." Those words must have sunk into Ben because ever since then he has had the ability to see.

Ben had an innate sense of hearing. He found that he could tell where people were and how far away they were just by listening to his surroundings. After growing his capability with his ears he found that when things make noises the noises bounce off objects and make it so that you can in a sense "see" where anything is. Ben started clicking his tongue to find out how far away or close objects were. After much practice he could be able to tell the difference if there was a a garbage can next to him or a chair, it was just amazing. He got so good at clicking and hearing his surroundings that everyone started treating him like a normal person with vision. His mom even said that she often forgot that he was visually impaired.

Ben went to the doctor and was sitting in the patient room waiting for the doctor playing his Gameboy when the doctor walked in. The doctor walked over and saw that Ben was blind and still playing his Gameboy and was simply amazed that this could ever happen! Ben does almost everything that a normal person would do, plays video games, roller blades, skates, climbs trees, name anything a normal teenager does and chances are he has done it. Ben is also very smart and has many aspirations in life! He can read at a college level and has been writing a book since he was in fourth grade. Everyone in the community looked up to him, he gave hope to so many people including me. And he continued to give hope to many others after his death in January 19th, 2009.

One day in sixth grade in one of my classes they showed us a clip of Ben's life and how he could see by clicking. As a sixth grader I thought that this was the coolest thing ever. As a senior in high school I still think this story is amazing. Ben could have easily given up but he decided to go far and beyond expectations. His attitude was beyond me, he always hated it when people talked about looks of others or themselves in a negative way. He always thought that we should care about what's on the inside and not care some much about our physical appearance. Ben went through so many hard things, he never complained about being blind or being different from everyone else. He just made things better. This is why Ben is my hero, because he is so selfless and has endured so much only to amaze everyone. Ben influenced so many for better, including me. So i just ask that we remember him and that we remember his story.

Page created on 10/20/2012 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 10/20/2012 12:00:00 AM

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Related Links - Celebrates Ben Underwood