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GCB Digest Summer 2012 (Text Version)

GCB Digest A Publication of the GEORGIA COUNCIL OF THE BLIND An Affiliate of the AMERICAN COUNCIL OF THE BLIND An Organization Promoting a Hand Up, Not a Hand Out Summer 2012 GCB Office 850 Gaines School Road Athens GA 30605 706-208-7132 1-888-519-3988 Email: info@georgiacounciloftheblind.org GCB President: William Holley 185 Weatherly Woods Drive Winterville, Georgia 30683 706-410-4945 Email: bill850@yahoo.com GCB Webmaster: Steven Longmire Email: info@sunbright.biz GCB Website: WWW.georgiacounciloftheblind.org Editor: Amanda Wilson 45 Rocky Circle, Northeast White, Georgia 30184 770-547-4700, Email: moonrocks@bellsouth.net Assistant Editor: Suzanne Jackson 131 Cannongate Circle Sharpsburg, GA 30277 770-463-1127, Email: susieb@numail.org TABLE OF CONTENTS From Your Editor, Amanda Wilson GCB Presidential Message, William Holley GCB Board Meeting Minutes, Robin Oliver GCB Treasurer’s Report, Jerrie Toney GCB Awards Guidelines and Contact Information GCB Chapter News Remembering Alfred Camp Let’s Talk GCB GCB Convention Announcement GGDU Top Dog Convention Announcement Announcements From Your Editor By Amanda Wilson Hello, GCB Family. We thank each one who has submitted articles in this issue of our magazine. If you have any change of address, telephone number, email address, or desired change of format, please inform our GCB treasurer, Jerrie Toney, at jmt2@bellsouth.net or via telephone at 706-227-6142. Thank you to everyone who makes our GCB Digest such a big success. I particularly want to thank Suzanne Jackson, assistant editor, for the many hours she has worked on the magazine, for her editing skills and for her outstanding reading of the cassette tapes. Thank our president, William Holley, for his presidential messages, with information about important events, legislation, and projects. I appreciate the contributions from each member who sent articles, who made suggestions to make the magazine better, and have supported me in so many ways. I also want to thank Ann Sims for making the Braille copies of the digest. I am so glad she is willing to do this for us. Thank you Ms. Ann! GCB Presidential Message By William Holley Hello GCB Family Members, It is my hope this article finds you all in the best health and spirit. I could not complete the writing of this article without acknowledging the recent passing of a friend and dedicated member of GCB, Al Camp. I personally will miss his encouragement and support. This article is dedicated to Al Camp and his encouraging support of GCB. Over the past three months we have witnessed the loss of vital resources and services for individuals with significant disabilities in the State of Georgia. Many people, living with disabilities in Georgia, are not aware of the hardships the passage of legislation (HB 1146) will bring upon the disability community. A number of questions were proposed by GCB before the passage of HB1146 including: • When and how will individuals with significant disabilities get an opportunity to voice their opinion about the proposed legislation 1143? • What is the projected budget for the cost of services after the expense of transition from the Dept. of Labor (DOL) to the Dept. of Human Services (DHS)? • Where is the outline for the development of the process to transition Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) services to a standalone agency? • Considering the time it takes to transfer services in state agencies, is July 1, 2012 a realistic date to have a standalone agency up and running? • What guarantee do we have for the appointment of the standalone agency board members being individuals with significant disabilities? (Although parents of individuals with significant disabilities are considered appropriate appointments, the board could end up with over 51% able bodied individuals.) None of our concerns were addressed prior to the passage of this legislation, which constitutes a violation of the Rehabilitation Act which reads: As required by Section 101(a) (16) (A) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.10(d) of the implementing regulations, the State agency must conduct public meetings throughout the state prior to the adoption of any substantive policies or procedures (or any substantive amendment to such policies and procedures) governing the provision of vocational rehabilitation (VR) or supported employment (SE) services under the State Plan or the supplement. RSA considers a change in the organizational structure of the designated state agency and the designated state unit identified in the State Plan to be a change in policy or procedure within the meaning of Section 101(a) (16) (A). As such, DRS must conduct public hearings, after giving adequate notice of the meetings, to provide the public, including individuals with disabilities, an opportunity to comment on the proposed reorganization. In addition, DRS must actively consult with the director of the Client Assistance Program and, as appropriate, with Indian tribes and tribal organizations when adopting new policies or amending current policies, including this proposed reorganization (Section 101(a)(16)(A)). The Rehabilitation Act clearly states adequate time must be given to the public, including individuals with disabilities, the opportunity to comment prior to the changes. The legislation was passed without adequate notice or comment in February 2012 while public comments were not heard until April 2012). However, despite the attempts to deny our membership their right to comment on the proposed changes, we remain encouraged. We have invited legal experts to the GCB state convention to address the violation of the federal Rehabilitation Act. We are encouraging individuals with disabilities to join us in the Blind Community to SUPPORT our efforts. Let’s make our convention an example of how to lead the way for the rights of individuals with disabilities. Our leadership will continue to promote encouragement and support as we remember Each One Reach One, Each One Teach One. Bill Holley President GCB GCB Board Meeting Minutes By Robin Oliver Georgia Council of the Blind Board Meeting Minutes January 21, 2012 Minutes Via Phone President Bill Holley welcomed all and called the meeting to order. After a Moment of Silence, new officers were sworn in, followed by Roll Call. Members present were as follows: President Bill Holley; 1st Vice Keith Morris; 2nd Vice Steve Longmire; Secretary Robin Oliver; Treasurer Jerrie Toney; At-Large rep Debbie Williams; Athens, Daniel Myers; Augusta, Chris Chavous; Jan Morris representing Chattooga; East Georgia, Phil Jones; Greater Columbus, Greg McDuffie; Ron Burgess representing Northwest; Tonia Clayton representing Rome/Floyd; Stephens, Al Camp, and GGDU, Marj Schneider. Also present, GCB Digest Editor, Amanda Wilson. Note was made that the statement "Marj is self-employed and participated in a program that assisted in training her and other people with disabilities business basics." was not totally correct. Marj is self-employed but she did not participate in training program; the minutes were voted to be accepted as corrected. Finance Committee Report • Treasury Report - Checking $6,942.23; Savings, $11,406.32; CD, $11,296.62; and Scholarship, $1.916.05, for a Portfolio of $61,961.29. The report was voted to be filed to audit. • Proposed Budget 2012 - There was discussion on whether or not predicting that we would make $100 in interest was a bit much. It was decided that we should believe we would grow and $100 was not too much to hope for. The projected revenue for this year is $11,912.00. Legislative Committee • HB 831 is the transfer of VR from the Department of Labor to the Department of Human Services. Call your representatives and let them know what you think of such a change. • Transportation HB 227: Vote no if your region didn’t get what they needed. Some round tables listened and others didn’t. When you vote in your region, the ballot will show which proposed projects are set in your area. • Dates to Remember at the Capitol: January 24 - Blind Day, February 16 - Disability Day Conference Committee 2012 • Savannah Convention, Chester Thrash Chair, committee members, Judy Presley & Marsha Farrow (Award Co-chairs), Mario Bade, Jimmie Burkes, Chris Chavous, Jack Lewis, Steve Longmire, Jamaica Miller, Kathy Morris, Robin Oliver, Jerrie Toney and Amanda Wilson. Public Relations/Technology Committee Report •Steve Longmire (Co-chair) reported that we are working on our website and Facebook sites. Check out our Facebook page; enter Georgia Council in the search box. As always, your feedback is welcomed. •Amanda Wilson (Co-chair) stated that she would get the Digest out in a timelier manner in the future. She would appreciate it if the chapters and members would send in articles and stories. (Without feedback there is no Digest.) The Technology committee will review the GCB Digest before it goes out. Membership Committee Report • Keith Morris (Co-chair) spoke of chapters having activities and events and inviting people to come out and enjoy and learn about GCB. These activities can also aid in retaining the members you have. •J.C. Coefield and Tim Kelly are going to try to see if they can start a GCB chapter in mid-Georgia, gathering members from the now defunct Houston and Macon chapters, as well as new people. Amanda Wilson is speaking with a group of people in west Georgia that are thinking of starting a chapter. Leadership Committee • Conflict of Interest Agreement - Marj pointed out that the agreement was not clear and that it had information that didn't really apply to GCB. After some discussion, it was decided that the constitution committee would rework and reword it. Marj agreed to assist in this matter. Don't forget to mark your calendars and head to Stephens County on February 5 for the Annual Bluegrass and Gospel Benefit Concert. The meeting was adjourned by vote. GCB Treasury Report By Jerrie Toney January 1 through January 31, 2012: Beginning Balance: $6,942.23 Total Amount of Deposits: $954.00 Total Debits: $113.00 Total Combined Amount of Checks and Debits: $238.00 Ending Balance: $7,658.23 Scholarship Balance: $2,463.85 Savings Account Balance: $11,406.32 Ending Savings Account Balance: $11,407.09 CD Balance: $11,296.62 Ending CD Balance: $11,299.98 Total Combined Amount: $32,829.15 Portfolio: $64,936.61 February 1 through February 28, 2012: Beginning Balance: $7,658.23 Total Amount of Deposits: $267.00 Total Amount of Checks: $0 Total Debits: $50.00 Total Combined Amount of Checks and Debits $50.00 Ending Balance: $7,875.23 Scholarship Balance: $2,706.25 Savings Account Balance: $11,407.09 Ending Savings Account Balance: $11,407.81 CD Balance: $11,299.98 Ending CD Balance: $11,303.33 Total Combined Amount: $33,292.62 Portfolio: $66,312.26 March 1 through March 31, 2012: Beginning Balance: $7,875.23 Total Amount of Deposits: $0 Total Amount of Checks: $1,534.95 Total Debits: $100.00 Total Combined Amounts of Checks and Debits: $1,634.95 Ending Balance: $6,240.28 Scholarship Balance: $8,827.59 Savings Account Balance: $11,407.81 Ending Savings Account Balance: $11,408.58 CD Balance: $11,303.33 Ending CD Balance: $11,306.46 Total Combined Amounts: $37,782.91 Portfolio: $68,794.26 April 1 through April 30, 2012: Beginning Balance: $6,240.28 Total Debits: $ Total Combined Amounts of Checks and Debits: $ Ending Balance: $ Scholarship Balance: $ Savings Account Balance: $11,408.58 Ending Savings Account Balance: $ CD Balance: $11,306.46 Ending CD Balance: $11,309.35 Total Combined Amounts: $ Portfolio: $ GCB Awards Guidelines 1. All awards committees shall be appointed at the January board meeting. 2. Nominations for all awards shall be submitted to the respective award committee chairpersons in writing (including e-mail) no later than June 15, 2012. 3. Nominations shall include the name of the candidate, plus the reason the candidate deserves the award. 4. Each award committee chairperson shall read to his/her committee members all award nominations. 5. The decision for selecting the award recipient shall be made by all members of that committee. 6. Criteria for the Rhoda Walker Award, suggested by Rhoda's sister, Helen Wasileski: The recipient can be a blind or sighted individual. Services rendered must be of non-paying status. Services may be any endeavor in the field of teaching, service, and betterment of life for the blind. The recipient must provide public awareness through speaking, seminars, and/or demonstration. There must be involvement of the educational field/teaching Braille. The recipient must push any innovation involving blindness or blind people. 7. The committee for selecting the recipient of the June Willis Guiding Eyes Award shall be legally blind. 8. The sighted recipient of the June Willis Guiding Eyes Award (who must be a GCB member) shall be known to GCB members through attendance at GCB state activities, and through his/her willing assistance and service to the blind and visually impaired. 9. The Walter R. McDonald Award shall be presented to an outstanding visually impaired individual who has, through his/her leadership and service, contributed significantly to the betterment of the blind and visually impaired community, and who has demonstrated by deeds and achievements his/her dedication to the principles incident to blindness espoused and practiced by the late Walter R. McDonald. The recipient may or may not be a member of the Georgia Council of the Blind. 10. The recipient of The Gerald Pye Community Service Award must be an active legally blind member of GCB in good standing. He or she must have demonstrated superior service to his or her community in a number of ways that exemplify the work of Gerald Pye. The candidate must be nominated in writing by a GCB member who knows firsthand of the candidate's community services. Examples of this service must be included in the written recommendation. 11. All GCB awards shall be presented periodically at a GCB State convention. Awards Committee Chair Judy Presley 706 878 2962 Email: hoyal@windstream.net Co-Chair Marsha Farrow 706 8592624 Email: marshafarrow@windstream.net June Willis Guiding Eyes Chair: Keith Morris 3359 White Oak Road Thomson GA 30824 706/595-1465 Email: mkumorris@yahoo.com Richard Bagley 8855 OLIVER MILL ROAD LULA GA 30554 770-983-1213 Email: richardbagley@bellsouth.net Scholarship Awards Chair: Debbie Williams 1477 NEBO ROAD DALLAS GA 30157 770-595-1007 Email: Debbie_teaches@comcast.net Tom Ridgeway 1071 SOUTH PINE KNOLL DRIVE MACON GA 31204 478 474 3577 Dr. Philip Dillard 116 WILEY DRIVE CEDARTOWN GA 30125 770-748-829 Bill Holley 185 WEATHERLY WOODS DRIVE WINTERVILLE GA 30683 706-410-4945 Email: gcbill850@yahoo.com Gerald Pye Community Service Award Chair- Sheila Rousey 73 Seminole Drive Toccoa, GA 30577 706-886-8619 Email: rtsbrousey@nctv.com Marion Badie P. O. Box 60395 Savannah GA 31420 912 247 5345 Email: badiem@aol.com Clifford Jones 1804 SUSAN LANE COLUMBUS GA 31906 706-569-9881 Email: cliffjones@knology.net Rhoda Walker Award Chair: Anne Wheeler 2199 Floyd Street Covington, GA 30014 770 786 5778 cell 678 480 2783 Email: awheel@bellsouth.net Heather Lopez 3226 PENINSULA DRIVE AUGUSTA GA 30909-0603 706-739-1129 Email: heatherlopez78@comcast.net Barbara Graham 116 EDINBURGH COURT ALPHARETTA GA 30004 678 319 0450 Email: bobbiegraham511@bellsouth.net Walter R McDonald Chair: Robin Oliver 90 Fourth Street, Apt. #8201 Athens, GA 30601 706-548-7401 Email: gcbfyi@yahoo.com Amanda Wilson 45 Rocky Circle White GA 30184 770-547-4700 Email: moonrocks@bellsouth.net Christopher Chavous 1616 Winter Street Augusta GA 30014-3550 706-737-4341 Email: cccmayo@yahoo.com The deadline for receipt of scholarship information is June 15, 2012. Scholarship applications may be obtained from the chair. Chair: Debbie Williams at the address above or via the web site at: http://www.georgiacounciloftheblind.org. GCB Chapter News Athens Chapter The Athens Chapter wants to update you on what they have been doing for the past few months. In March, we held our Annual Music Night Fund Raiser which was held at Little Kings Club here in Athens--and that was held on Friday, March 23rd. This was a really successful one like it normally is, and a member of our chapter, Jamaica Miller, is the one that helps line that up for our chapter--and does a lot of hard work in getting that accomplished. We held our monthly meeting here at Multiple Choices on Saturday, March 24, and at our new time for our meetings, which was voted on by the members present at a past meeting. The new meeting time is now 10:30 A.M. We held our monthly meeting in April on the third Saturday of the month, since the GCB State Board Meeting was going to be held on the fourth Saturday of the month. Our monthly meeting for April was held on Saturday, April 21st at Multiple Choices at 10:30 A.M. Several of our members attended the GCB State Board Meeting, which was held at Multiple Choices here in Athens on Sat. April 28th. For the month of May, our chapter's monthly meeting will be a telephone conference call on Saturday, May 26th at 10:30 A.M. Our monthly meeting for June will be held at Multiple Choices on Saturday, June 23rd at 10:30 A.M. For July, our chapter will hold our annual Picnic and it will be held at Memorial Park here in Athens on Saturday, July 28th from 11 A.M. to 3 P.M. The members of the other chapters of GCB are welcome to attend the Picnic. Just contact us to let us know how many other GCB members to expect for it. Also if people need directions, they can contact me. For more information about the Athens chapter please contact Daniel Myers at 706-850-7472, or via email at danielhmyers@live.com. Augusta Chapter The Augusta chapter cordially invites you to their fourth annual picnic on Saturday, September 29, 2012 at Diamond Lake Covered Pavilion. Everyone is invited for food, fun and fellowship. For more information about the Augusta chapter please contact Christopher Chavous at 706-737-4341, or via email at cccmayo@yahoo.com. Bainbridge Chapter The Bainbridge chapter is planning to attend the convention in Savannah in August. The Bainbridge Chapter meetings are held on the second Saturday of the month at the library. For more information about the Bainbridge chapter, please contact Tonya Wright at 229-248-0087. Chattooga County Chapter The Chattooga County chapter has been involved in several different activities the past few months. After meeting with a representative from the Sloppy Floyd Park, plans are being made to make a Braille trail at the park. We are very thankful to Jan Morris for all of her volunteer help at our meetings. She has also helped by driving many of our members to places they might not have been able to go without her help. In February of this year, she drove Saunya Jones to The School for the Blind in Macon, Georgia. Saunya enjoyed taking a weekend short course at the school. She took classes in sewing, first aid, cooking, party planning and crafts. She had a great time. Saunya also participated in a Bible Bowl competition and her team came in third place area wide. After an article appeared in the newspaper explaining how she hoped learning Braille would help her dream come true one day, she was given the chance to fulfill her dream. She had a dream of reading to young children because she liked to hear them smile. She is now a volunteer at the Montessori School and reads to all the children every week. Saunya also read 1500 Braille pages for the Braille Readers Are Leaders contest. We also enjoyed hearing Mary Turnipseed’s talk about taking the Hadley’s School for the Blind Bird Calling course at our last meeting. We will be completing a C.P.R. course at our next meeting. For more information about the Chattooga County chapter, please contact Marsha Farrow at 706-859-2624, or via email at marshafarrow@windstream.net East Georgia Chapter The East Georgia chapter and the Georgia Radio Reading Service cordially invites you to attend our first annual picnic fundraiser on Saturday, June 16, 2012, at 11:00 A. M. until 2:00 P.M. at the Covington Lions Club, which is located at 3120 Conyers Street in Covington, Georgia. They will have information booths, food, games and prizes. For more information about the East Georgia Chapter, please contact Philip Jones at 770-784-0236, or via email at brilman1952@bellsouth.net. Greater Columbus Chapter The Greater Columbus Chapter officers are as follows: Gregory McDuffie as President; Dirk Jones as First Vice-President; Clifford Jones as Second Vice-President; Terry Powell as Secretary; Laverne Byrd as Assistant Secretary; Joe McNeil as Treasurer; Otis Smith as Chaplain. Chapter meetings are held the first Saturday of each month at the Columbus Public Library, 3000 Macon Road, from 1PM-3PM. For information, contact Gregory McDuffie at 706-505-6128 or E mail gregory.mcduffie@yahoo.com. Greater Hall County Chapter The Greater Hall County chapter is co-sponsoring a visually impaired (legally blind) student from Hall County school system, to attend the Lion's Club Camp for visually impaired and handicapped children. Hagen is 11 years old. His teacher, Bridgett Shultz, has spoken to our chapter several times to inform our chapter about the special needs children that she teaches. Bridgett said that Hagen was very excited about going to camp, and our chapter is excited for him. Our chapter will take our summer recess after our June meeting, which will be a luncheon meeting at Luna's restaurant in Gainesville. We recess for July and August, and resume again in September. One of our long time members and a past president and a past vice-president, Genie Rae O'Kelley, moved away in April of this year. We will miss her very much, and wish her the best. Our present vice-president, Judy Presley, has provided our chapter with great programs for which we are grateful, and we thank her very much. We send our deepest sympathy and condolences to the family of Mr. Al Camp of the Stephens County chapter. He will be missed by all of GCB. He was a man of vision, who lost his vision in the service of his country. GOD bless him and his family. For more information about the Greater Hall county chapter please contact Richard Bagley at 770-983-1213, or via email at richardbagley@bellsouth.net. Metro Atlanta Chapter The Metro Atlanta chapter has had several interesting meetings this year. In February, the members met at CVI for a hot dog supper, birthday celebration for member, Chris Baldridge, and an auction. Everyone brought several articles to be auctioned, and much fun was had by all. In March, chapter treasurer, Steve Longmire invited his friend who makes and sells various kinds of healthy pies, and he brought samples along. April's meeting was held at the usual place in Decatur, and one of Ann Sims' former Braille students gave the program about her experiences learning through Hadley first and then coming to CVI. Although the statement has been made that rehab counselors were now providing equipment and materials for homemakers, this student's counselor would not purchase her a brailler or a much-needed talking dictionary. The chapter bought a very good used brailler and gave it to her and is also providing her with a talking dictionary to help her improve her spelling and learn the meanings of words. When rehabilitation counselors will not assist their clients in getting the materials and equipment they need to improve their skills and independence, it is great that consumer organizations can step in and help. One of the chapter members gave several Braille writers to the president, who sent them off to be refurbished, and the East Georgia Chapter of GCB gave a generous donation to pay for this work. It is hoped that these braillers can be given to other students whose counselors would not help them. One wonders why this statement about rehab now furnishing homemakers with necessary materials and equipment was made from rehab but not carried out. May was the picnic and birthday party for member, Barbara Graham. This was held in the Jess Lucas Park in Hapeville, and several folks from other chapters joined the fun. There were games with prizes, lots of good eats and snacks, and plenty of fellowship, and the weather was beautiful. Everyone is in prayer for Ms. Cora and family during this trying time they are experiencing of the home-going of her beloved husband, Alfred Camp. Where would the scholarship fund be for GCB without the Camps?! They are deeply appreciated by this chapter and many others in GCB. We hope the GCB Board of Directors will vote yes to change the name of our scholarship program to The Alfred Camp GCB Scholarship Fund to help recognize his generous gifts and fundraisers every year. For more information about the Metro Atlanta chapter please contact Ann Sims at 404-767-1792, or via email at brailleteacherann@bellsouth.net. Northwest Chapter The Northwest Chapter is still meeting on the second Tuesday every other month at the Bank of Lafayette community room at 7:00pm. For more information about the Northwest chapter, please contact James Howard at 706-996-4417. Rome Floyd County Chapter In February, we celebrated Valentine’s Day with lots of chocolate and our president, Amanda Wilson, brought everyone Braille Valentines. We also had Beverly Hunter to come and talk to us about the NFB Newsline. She was very informative and some of our members signed up to take advantage of their services. In March, we had different members bring their talking gadgets to have show and tell. Some of them were talking scale, color detector, money identifier, bar code reader, Bible and some large print catalogs for people to use to order some of these products. Marsha and some of her members came and visited us as well. In April, The Rome Floyd County Chapter celebrated Easter by having a catered meal which was provided by the local Lions Club. In May we had Kim Duncan from Vocational Rehabilitation to come and speak to us. She was full of positive information and gave us some cool brochures about the different programs in her organization. The Rome Floyd County chapter meetings are held in the Etowah Room of the Rome library at 11:00, usually on the third Tuesday of the month. For more information about the Rome Floyd County chapter, please contact Amanda Wilson at 770-547-4700 or via email at moonrocks@bellsouth.net. Savannah Chapter The Savannah chapter members have new guide dogs. Marj Schneider has a guide dog from the Seeing Eye named Fennel. Jack Lewis has a guide dog from the Seeing Eye named Specks. The Savannah chapter is planning a Bowling night sometime soon. The Savannah chapter is looking forward to hosting the convention in August. The Savannah chapter is going to their local hospitals to educate hospital staff on how to work with individuals with visual impairments. Jack Lewis just celebrated his eightieth birthday recently. The Savannah chapter meetings are on the third Tuesday of each month except July. Our Annual Christmas Party serves as our December meeting. We meet at the Clews Ford Company on Abercorn Street in the Conference Room from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm. A 30 minute Social Time is held prior to the meeting. For more information about the Savannah chapter please contact Kim Harrison at 912-228-1190, or via email at dkimharrison@gmail.com. Stephens County Chapter The Stephens County chapter usually meets at the Shiloh Fire Department. For more information about the Stephens County chapter please contact Cora Camp at 706-886-3894. Blinded in Korea Told by: Alfred Camp Written by: Debbie Williams On September 13, 1949, Alfred Camp joined the United States Army. After serving his country eight months, he received the orders that he would be serving in Japan for two years for overseas occupational duty. While on the ship to Japan and one day shy of his arrival, war broke out in Korea. The orders drastically changed and so did the life of Alfred Camp. Camp was sent straight to the front lines of Korea. For six months, he was a machine gunner on the front lines just six miles from the Manchurian border. On New Year’s Eve in 1950, it was well below freezing and six inches of snow had already fallen to the ground. Around 9:00 p.m., while in a foxhole and firing his machine gun, Camp was hit by shrapnel from a round of mortar shells. He was wounded in both eyes, his right arm, and in his stomach. His vision was blurred to the point that Camp was able to recognize outlines only. In severe pain and with fragments of shrapnel embedded in his body, Camp continued to fight on into the night until the battle had subsided. Early the next morning, Camp made his way over to the company’s commanding office to let them know he had been wounded and needed to get to the Aid Station. It was at this time that Camp was told that the aid station had been moved, that they were surrounded by the enemy and needed to get out the best they could. While they all were trying to get to safety, they happened upon soldiers fighting a battle. The machine gunner had been killed. Camp was asked if he was able to fire the machine gun. Camp said that he could not see the enemy, but he could hear them. So, the gun was pointed in the direction of the enemy and Camp began firing. In a matter of minutes, a round of mortar exploded over the foxhole that Camp was defending. The force of the explosion of mortar knocked Camp to the ground. He was wounded again in both eyes and just above his heart. This time, his wounds left him in total darkness. In less than 24 hours, Camp was wounded twice in his eyes. The first time, his vision was blurred, the second time, resulted in total blindness. In fear of being captured by the enemy, Camp vehemently prayed for God’s mercy. He prayed that God would intervene by either allowing him to escape or let him die. Minutes later, Camp heard someone walking nearby. He could hear soldiers beg the man for help. Camp also asked the man for help. Camp convinced the man that he could hold on to his coat. The man led Camp to safety and to aid. Due to the severity of Camp’s wounds, he was flown to Japan. At the end of January, Camp was sent back to the United States to an Army Hospital. It was there that Camp was told that without God’s intervention, he would never see again. In January of 1952, Camp was awarded the Silver Star which is the third highest military decoration that can be awarded to a member of any branch of the Armed Forces. Earlier, he had been awarded the Purple Heart for being wounded in battle. Currently, at the age of 80, Alfred Camp is a retired piano tuner. He is very active in his community. He is the President of the Stephens County chapter of the Georgia Council of the Blind. Camp also plays music along with his band for five different nursing homes. He is married to Cora, his wife of 56 years. They have two daughters, five grandchildren, and four great grandchildren. Alfred Camp 1928 - 2012 Alfred William Camp, age 83, of Toccoa, passed away, Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at Tranquility Hospice in Austell. Born August 31, 1928 in Toccoa, he was a son of the late John Earl and Florence Thomas Camp. He was a member of the Church of God (AWA), and was a self-employed piano technician and worked for Lovell Piano Company for several years. Mr. Camp was a former President of the Stephens County Chapter of the GA Council of the Blind for many years. Alfred and his band, Al Camp and the Night Owls, played for seven nursing homes for over 40 years. The last time he played was March 5, 2012, at the Royston Nursing Home. Mr. Camp was a U. S. Army Korean War Veteran where he lost his sight during the conflict, receiving the Silver Star and the Purple Heart. Family members include his wife, Cora Bryson Camp; daughters and sons-in-law, Dolores and David Rutenber, and Debra and Jeffery Williams; grandchildren, Michael Williams, Leah and Shane Lawson, Joshua Williams, Jason Williams, and Jennifer Rutenber; great-grandchildren, Dayana Rutenber, Blake Williams, Kayleigh Williams, and Lillian Williams; brothers, Wallace Camp, Lawrence Camp, and Ben Camp; sisters, Betty Camp, Jane Payne and Rosa Farah. He was preceded in death by a son, Russell Camp, two brothers and two sisters. Funeral services will be held at three o'clock, Saturday, May 12, 2012 at the Chapel of Whitlock Mortuary with the Pastor Bruce Gore officiating. Burial will follow at Stephens Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends at the mortuary from 2-4 and 6-8 Friday. Whitlock Mortuary is in charge of the arrangements. 120 Rose Lane Toccoa, GA 30577 706-886-9411. Let's Talk GCB 2012 Calendar Welcome to Let's Talk GCB. This is a conference call not only for Georgia Council of the Blind members, but also to individuals who are interested in finding others like themselves to share social and/or advocacy activities. The meetings are held the fourth Tuesday of the month, hosted by a different chapter and/or affiliate at 8:00 PM. The call in number is 1-218-844-3388 and the PIN is 58422. We are looking forward to talking with you. February 28: Stephens/Convention (convention contest announcement) March 27: Rome/Floyd & Membership April 24: Athens/East GA May 22: Chattooga/Northwest June 26: Bainbridge/Greater Columbus July 24: Savannah/PR & Technology August 28: Augusta/Convention September 25: Metro Atlanta/Greater Hall October 23: GGDU & GCBL November 27: TBA GCB CONVENTION ANNOUNCEMENT COME, TAKE A BREAK AND ENJOY PART OF YOUR SUMMER WITH US. MAKE THE WEEKEND OF AUGUST 3-5, 2012 ONE THAT YOU LEARN A FEW THINGS AND HAVE A GREAT DEAL OF FUN. WHERE YOU MIGHT ASK? IN HISTORIC SAVANNAH, GEORGIA A CITY WHERE YOU CAN TRAVEL BY FOOT, TROLLEY OR RIVERBOAT A CITY WHERE YOU CAN JUST LAY BACK OR HOBNOB WITH A GHOST A CITY WHERE ON A HOT SUMMER DAY YOU CAN CHILL ON THE COOLEST RIVER WALK IN THE USA A CITY KNOWN FOR HAVING THE BEST BEER, COFFEE AND ICE CREAM PARLORS IN AMERICA STAY WITH US IN THE HISTORIC DISTRICT AT THE INN AT ELLIS SQUARE 201 West Bay Street, Savannah, Georgia 31401 The hotel is across Bay Street from River Street and is just steps from the celebrated City Market and other local attractions. You can make hotel reservations by calling 1-912-236-4440 and ask for extension 147. Request rates for the Georgia Council of the Blind. Reservations must be made at least one month before the convention. When you call to make hotel reservations, let them know you are with the GCB convention. If you have any questions or need any additional information, contact the GCB office at 1-706-208-7132 or 1-888-519-3988. You may send an e-mail to info@georgiacounciloftheblind.org. WE LOOK FORWARD TO SPENDING A GOOD OLD HOT TIME IN SAVANNAH WITH YOU. There will be a fifty fifty raffle during the convention to raise money for the scholarship fund. There will be a silent auction on themed baskets from the different chapters and affiliates during the convention to raise money for the general fund. Please submit all fees and award nominations by July fifteenth for the following: Loving cups, which will be twenty-five dollars; presidential certificates, which will be seven dollars; hospitality room, which will be twenty dollars, and the door prizes, which will be twenty-five dollars. Top Dog Workshop for 2013 The popular Southeast Regional Top Dog workshop will happen again, January 11-13, 2013, this time in the Hostess City, Savannah, Georgia. Georgia Guide Dog Users will welcome guide dog handlers, puppy raisers and many dogs and puppies from the Southeast and around the country to the Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Suites Gateway Conference Center at 17 Gateway Boulevard East in Savannah for three days of workshops, exhibits, fine Southern food and hospitality, an optional city tour, and the chance to visit with old friends and to make new ones. A committee will be hard at work this spring planning the sort of memorable program that you now expect from Top Dog and a complete schedule will be circulated in advance. Please share your suggestions and ideas with us at 2013topdog@gmail.com Registration will be available online or through the mail beginning in August 2012. When you register you will be able to choose two lunch and two dinner meals priced very affordably and you may opt for the Friday afternoon tour of Savannah’s historic district. Room rates at the Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Suites Gateway will be $89.00 per night, plus 13% sales tax. These conference rates will apply from Thursday, January 10, 2013 through Sunday January 13, 2013, as well as three nights prior to and following the event. If you choose to, you could stay as many as nine nights at the special event rate. Up to four people can share these comfortably-sized rooms and a hot breakfast is included in the room rate. Located off of exit 94 from I95, the hotel is just 15 miles from the Savannah International Airport and a similar distance from both the Amtrak and Greyhound stations. Make reservations at the Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Suites by calling the hotel directly at 912-925-2700, and make certain to mention group code GGD (Good Dog). The event is also listed under the name of Georgia Guide Dog Users. Make your plans now to come to Savannah in January 2013. See y’all here. ANNOUNCEMENT There is a cool web site where you can play talking games with other individuals with visual impairments. Please visit www.rsgames.org. It has the following games: Monopoly, Uno, Yatter, Battleship, Blackjack, Apples to Apples, and Shut the Box.

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