Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Bill Irwin, Author of 'Blind Courage'


When Sherry first got the idea to Hike the Appalachian Trail, we started our research. the first book recommended by a young girl at the library was 'A Walk in the Woods' by Bill Bryson. The book was more a parody, and a great read. Bill wrote the book after completing the trail through New Found Gap. It did become a best seller and called attention to the AT. A little more research led us to 'Blind Courage' a book describing the triumphs and heartaches of Bill Irwin, the only blind man to hike the entire AT. This book told us more of what to really expect. Bill along with co-author David McCasland did a marvelous job of inspiring us to make an attempt at the trail. This week I have been privileged to correspond (e-mail) with Bill's wife Debra. She seems to be a very sweet lady. I learned that the Irwins live here in Maine now. Bill is a highly sought after motivational speaker.

As I have mentioned to you here on the Blog, we are attempting to hike the Appalachian Trail. I have said I do not see how a blind man did it, but he did. That man was Bill Irwin. He and his dog Orient, hiked the trail. Want to see some of the actual trail with him, click the thread below.

This man is amazing.
Just a sort entry,
Nite Shipslog

> Two young boys walked into a pharmacy one day, picked
out a box of tampons and proceeded to the checkout counter.
The man at the counter asked the older boy, "Son, how old are you?"
"Eight," the boy replied.
The man continued, "do you know what these are used for?"
The boy replied, "not exactly, but they aren't for me. They're for
him. He's my brother. He's four. We saw on TV that if you use these you
would be able to swim and ride a bike. Right now, he can't do either."


Lucy said...

A really interesting read. I winder if that 4 year old was able to ride a bike and swim.

shirl72 said...

You are meeting lots of trail blazers and
getting beautiful pictures. The building in
question looks like it may be a look out place The top window is where they sit on guard and watch for whatever they were told to do. You and Paula need to help solve the two mysteries.


betty said...

good for Bill Irwin; I enjoyed watching the clip of him and his dog hiking the trail; the dog seems to be saying "I don't think they taught us that in leading the blind school"; the dog's look when Mr. Irvin was kissing that sign (can't remember the name of it, but I know you have mentioned it before) was priceless. what an amazing thing people can do when they set goals and go out and do it, despite the odds and despite the handicaps

I was thinking, as I watched his video, when he gets to heaven and has his eyesight back and if he has a chance to look at the trail, what will he think???