[Nfbofsc] Positive Note 1476

David Houck nfbsc at sc.rr.com
Tue Nov 25 13:29:50 UTC 2014

November 25, 2014

Memo To:  Executive Officers, Board Members, Chapter & Division Presidents &

From:  Parnell Diggs, President

Positive Note 1476

Dear Fellow Federationists:


              We are releasing the Positive Note early this week in advance
of Thanksgiving.  Happy Thanksgiving to all who read this Positive Note.  I
hope you have an opportunity to spend this holiday with loved-ones and that
your Christmas Season gets off to an excellent start.  I have always loved
this time of year.

>From time-to-time, I like to pause and reflect upon the reasons why I am
thankful.  With Thanksgiving being just two days away, it occurs to me that
I should do so here.  As you know, the National Federation of the Blind
celebrated our Seventy-fourth Anniversary on November 16, 2014.  We are now
in the seventy-fifth year of the organized blind movement.  I am thankful
for the movement because I know that (as a blind person) my life is better
because of the National Federation of the Blind.

I am thankful for my Federation family.  Working together, we have improved
the quality of life of blind people through increased employed
opportunities, better education, protection in the courts, advocacy, and so
many other ways that I cannot imagine what life would be like if not for the

While the Holiday Season is upon us, it has not slowed down at all, as I
have found myself on the road every weekend so far this month with the
exception of one weekend, and during that weekend I attended two chapter
meetings.  The hectic schedule will continue in December with road trips and
chapter Christmas parties.  I look forward to seeing you at some of those
activities and celebrating the Holiday Season with you.  Many of us will
gather at Rocky Bottom during the weekend of December 12 through 14.  Please
let us know your schedule so we can plan appropriately for the Retreat.

If you don't mind receiving your Positive Note by email, you can sign up for
the listserv by visiting www.nfbscnet.org, or simply send us an email at
nfbsc at sc.rr.com.  You can also elect to receive the Positive Note in print
in 2015 (and continuing) simply by letting us know.

Thus, there are three ways you can indicate your interest in receiving the
Positive Note.  Call us, email us, or sign-up for the listserv.  You should
do at least one of these things by the end of the year.  This will help us
update our mailing lists and streamline the delivery of the Positive Note.

The National Federation of the Blind knows that blindness is not the
characteristic which defines you or your future.  Every day, we raise
expectations of blind people because low expectations create obstacles
between blind people and our dreams.  You can live the life you want:
blindness is not what holds you back.  Joining me for comments in this
Positive Note is the President Emeritus of the NFB of SC.  Here is Dr.

This being the Thanksgiving week our thoughts primarily are with the
blessings we receive each and every day.  If we had to make a list of our
blessings heading the list we'd be thankful for our immediate family
members.  Betty and I are very pleased that our son Craig has been in
Columbia for some one and a half years now and he certainly is a blessing to
us.  We also love our three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
The youngest is one year old Elizabeth who lives with her parents in
Louisville.  In June Betty and I celebrated our 65th wedding anniversary and
we were so pleased to have our three grandchildren and three
great-grandchildren come to Columbia to participate in this memorable
occasion.  Little Elizabeth warmed up quickly and sat on her
great-granddaddy's lap which was a blessing to me.  Our other
great-granddaughter Brook just celebrated her fifth birthday and our
great-grandson Mason celebrated his third birthday in August.  Craig will
join us for Thanksgiving dinner this Thursday and will enjoy the usual
Thanksgiving meal featuring turkey, sweet potatoes, dressing, etc.  We would
be remiss if we were not thankful for the many members of the NFB of SC
which faithfully served the blind of the state for some 70 years.  I would
also be remiss if I did not express thanksgiving for my wonderful wife Betty
who has faithfully been with me throughout the years in this big program of
service to the blind.  I was very pleased that our national organization
honored Betty by establishing a scholarship which bears her name.  

Finally, I'm thankful for the very fine state conventions the NFB of SC has
sponsored throughout the years.  In that regard, please join me as we travel
down memory lane to review the August 13 to 15, 1999 NFB of SC Columbia
convention at the Adams Mark Hotel where 300 delegates registered for this
43rd annual convention.  Friday kicked off registration, several exhibits,
divisional meetings and committee meetings.  The evening reception was a
real hit with a disc jockey and dancing late into the evening.  The Saturday
morning session featured NFB representative Joanne Wilson's national NFB
report, Dr. Sheila Breitweiser's SC School for the Deaf and the Blind report
on the School's 150th anniversary, Mr. Dean Kruger, the SC Insurance
Department head who was working to get better van insurance rates for
federation chapter vans, Mr. Charles Davis of the Employment Security
Commission speaking on NFB Jobline, Mr. John Landrum of the State Library
speaking concerning NFB Newsline service, and Guynell Williams who spoke on
Talking Book Services. Wilbur Cave of the Governor's Office was the luncheon
keynote speaker who stated that Governor Hodges was interested in keeping
the Commission for the Blind from being restructured and Mr. Cave received
the NFB of SC Presidential Citation.  This was followed up by Interim
Commissioner Delbert Singleton giving the afternoon session report from the
Commission for the Blind.  Several federationists sat on a panel sharing
their life experiences.  A technology panel was also featured by blind
computer users.  Reports on Rocky Bottom and the Federation Center
accomplishments highlighted these programs over the past year.  Chapter and
division reports were shared with the delegates by these various presidents.
Ending the afternoon session was Edsel Doyle's NFB Bus Fund report.  The
convention banquet featured several scholarships given to deserving blind
college students, honors and awards for those who went that extra mile in
service to the blind in a variety of ways and Joanne Wilson's keynote
banquet address which was a rousing speech.  Sunday morning's agenda
included a devotional and memorial service, NFB of SC and Rocky Bottom
financial reports, resolutions, NFB stewardship programs and those elected
included Mary Middleton, Bob Bell, Hattie Duncan, Edsel Doyle and Chris
Danielsen.  While space does not permit a greater detail of convention
happenings, you can read more in the November 1999 edition of the Palmetto
Blind.  Congratulations to Marshall Tucker who celebrated his 91st birthday
a few days ago.  Finally, I wish for every one of you a blessed


Final Thought:  "Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we
have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order,
confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home,
a stranger into a friend." - Melody Beatty

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