Helen Keller is well known as one of the few
handicapped people who managed to overcome their
handicap and go on to live normal lives. Born on
the 27th of June 1880, she developed a high
fever at the age of 19 months.
As a result,
she lost the ability to hear and see. her world
became silent and dark. She was a clever child
yet she found learning difficult and
frustrating. No one could get through to her and
her frustrations led her to be branded as a
'wild child'. Her rescuer came in the form of a
teacher who herself had poor vision.
It was a struggle at first for Anne Sullivan,
the teacher, to communicate with Helen. She had
to find way to make Helen understand words
and sentences. she did so by signing the letters
of words onto Helen's hands. It was laborious
and the results were not encouraging at first.
It was only when Anne signed the letters for the
word "water" that Helen finally "saw" what the
letters meant. They were both thrilled and on
that day itself. Helen learnt 30 words that made
sense to her. her cleverness shone through and
she went on to learn more words and then,
sentences. With a lot of determination, this
'wild child' went on to attend college and
became famous for her 'never-say-die attitude'.