My Own Personal Hero
My husband, Wesley Britton, has RP and is the most impressive man that I
know. Wesley's life has never been easy. I have known him since second
grade and throughout our school years he was picked on horribly because he
wore thick glasses and could not participate in sports. Thinking back on it
now, I wonder if those years of being an outcast in school didn't somehow
prepare him for what he would go through years later.
After graduation, Wes went off to college. Not sure of what path he wanted
to follow he went first to a local college and then to the university in our
home state. During this time Wes was diagnosed with RP. Coping with his
disease at first was not easy for him. Mobility Training was far from easy.
The thought of using a white cane did not appeal to him but he learned what
he could. The friends at college that he had at the time had a hard time
accepting and coping with his disease also. Wes stuck it out at college and
got his bachelor's degree in English. His family moved to Texas and he soon
followed. In some ways, life was easier there. People there did not know
the sighted Wesley, so he seemed to be accepted better. As Wes tells it
for a while after that he carried around alot of anger and the sound of
breaking glass became very soothing to him.
After several failed attempts to find employment, a councilor at the Texas
Commission for the Blind suggested that Wes go back to college. By this
time he was loosing what seemed like big "chunks" of his vision at a time.
Wes was using a Visual Teck by this time but decided that he was going to
try to finish his education.
Getting an education under the best conditions is not easy but for a person
with a disability it can sometimes seem like an insurmountable feat. Wes
was persistant however. He graduated and got his Master degree in English.
However, he still wasn't finished. He continued his education and got his
PhD in American Literature. He did his thesis on Mark Twain and wrote for
the Mark Twain encyclopedia. He soon became known as the world's expert in
Mark Twain in the media. He is a member of the Mark Twain forum and will be
a featured speaker at their upcoming convention in August 2001.
These are not my husband's only accomplishments. He writes encyclopedia
articles and book reviews for Salem Publishing in California. He is an
accomplished poet and president of a local poetry society. He teaches
English at the local community college. He has been listed in Marquis Who's
Who for the last several years and is in their Who's Who in the World
publication for the year 2000. He is active in the local Citizen's with
Disabilities group and has given some practical English seminars at their
last two conventions.
He came back to his hometown in Pennsylvania two years ago. We reunited and
have been married for just over a year now. Wesley lost what little he had
left of his sight just before he came home and is now totally blind but he
never seems to let this get in his way.
My husband is living proof that no dream is unattainable if your desire is
strong enough. He is an ispiration to his students and I am proud to be his
wife. Since I have never had any previous experiance with blindness before
reuniting with him, he has taught me much. He never seems to loose patience
with me and sometimes I have to wonder which one of us truly has a
I am hoping that this very shortened version of his story is of interest to
you and any who may read it. As I tell anyone who will listen when I tell
Wes's story--if ever you feel like you can't go on and want to give up.
Think of my husband and all he went through to make his dreams come true and
know that no goal is outside of your reach if you want it bad enough.
If you would like to have your story listed, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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