[NFBMO] FW: Power Up

Gary Wunder gwunder at earthlink.net
Sat Mar 26 17:30:45 UTC 2022

This is a friend of mine who works for Missouri Assistive Technology. There is a conference that immediately follows ours, and it is held in blue Springs. Here is his question:


From: Scout Merry <smerry at mo-at.org> 
Sent: Friday, March 25, 2022 2:56 PM
To: gwunder at earthlink.net
Subject: Power Up



I m reaching out to see if you have any connections in the Springfield area who are coming to Power Up. I have a blind colleague who cannot find a ride. We have both been trying but have come up empty handed. He will attend virtually if nothing else but we would all benefit more from him actually being there. 

I don’t expect you to solve this but I figured you might not mind if I reached out.  

Thanks Gary. 


Scout Merry

Sent from my iPhone

On Jan 27, 2021, at 3:27 PM, Gary Wunder <gwunder at earthlink.net <mailto:gwunder at earthlink.net> > wrote:


Hello, friend. I apologize for taking so long to get back with you. My wife used to sell the Abisee product. We felt rather shortchanged when the company went out of business and we found we could no longer get replacement batteries and other things. If she wants to give the unit away, I can certainly advertise it in the Braille Monitor to see who might want it.


Debbie and I are both doing fine. We had Covid in July, and we have been trying to stay extra safe. Still, it is a difficulty. There are still times when we need to go outside, and not every shopping trip can be made by someone else.


I think leaving Columbia would be a very hard thing for me now. I came to the town a long time ago, and I really love it. I came from a small town, so it probably symbolizes in greater detail the necessary the kind of independence that one can find by moving to a city. It probably could have been any city, but I still tell people that Columbia is the hub of the universe.


I wish I had some idea about the abacus. The only ones that I have seen are plastic. I will check around to see if I can find something that has wooden beads.


It is so very good to hear from you. Please accept my apology for the long delay in responding. If you need the reader advertise, do let me know.






From: Scout Merry <smerry at mo-at.org <mailto:smerry at mo-at.org> > 
Sent: Wednesday, January 13, 2021 3:55 PM
To: gwunder at earthlink.net <mailto:gwunder at earthlink.net> 
Subject: hello


Hello there Gary Wunder,


Both you and your wife came up in conversation the other day.  I have been working with a woman in Northwest MO who needed an OCR device and I managed to get her one that was hanging around SIL, in Columbia.  That one was an ABiSee device and it did not work well for her needs.  I ended up giving her a SARA, which she really likes, but she has an ABiSee that she would like to pass on to someone.  She thought your wife might know a student who could benefit.  I thought you may also know of someone.  

She also requested an abacus with wooden beads (not plastic) so I thought I would reach out to you and Tim Lehman to see if either of you might know where to find such a thing.  I also thought of reaching out to Deanna Noriega, but I no longer have an email address for her.  


Well, things here in Blue Springs are generally good but let me tell you that moving to Independence right before a pandemic, has not been the most fun stage of my life.  I do miss Columbia but I really like all that I am learning and able to share here at MOAT.  It is a great job and I am very thankful for the job as well as the fantastic and intelligent co-workers here.  I have actually been able to do a fair amount of low vision demonstrations, even during the pandemic.  I would like to share with you one quick story of a couple that came into the office.  The wife is in her early 90’s and they are both still quite spry.  She is still on a bowling league but says it is about time for her to quit (but the teamdoes not want her to go). Her vision has really decreased in the last year or so and she felt like the doctors were not answering her questions.  We talked about her frustrations and I offered my non-medical opinion.  I was able to explain the likely reason for the doctor visit outcomes.  She was heartened that the eye care professionals were not out to make her vision worse!  I showed her many devices and she loved them all.  I was able to get her Zoom Text for her computer and then a CCTV came available and I was able to give it to her. She was ecstatic.  I took it to her home and set it up for her.  Her husband calls me periodically and lets me know that she uses it every day.  

How is it that every person is not beating down the door for this job?  Who could ask for better work.  


I hope all is well with you.  If you feel inspired, I would love to hear what mischief you are getting into these days.  

Please take care, 


Scout Merry

Misssouri Assistive Technology

816-655-6705 (direct voice)

smerry at mo-at.org <mailto:smerry at mo-at.org> 



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