[Perform-talk] Blind man from NFB's Colorado Center for the Blind killed while waiting for a bus

Donna Hill penatwork at epix.net
Sat Dec 18 18:43:28 UTC 2010

The Denver Post
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Blind man killed when car slides on ice, hits three people at Littleton 
bus stop
By Howard Pankratz and Carlos Illescas The Denver Post
Posted: 12/18/2010 01:00:00 AM MST
Updated: 12/18/2010 06:30:20 AM MST
"He made you feel at home. If you had a problem, he would lift you up." 
Kenny Flack, a classmate of David Nanney's, left. Nanney was killed Friday.

David Nanney planned to return to Baltimore today — during a two-week 
break from classes at the Colorado Center for the Blind — to spend the 
holidays with
family and friends.

But as he waited for a bus Friday morning with two other visually 
impaired students to attend a holiday party at the school, an 
out-of-control car hit all
three on the sidewalk, killing Nanney, 47.

Nanney died at Littleton Adventist Hospital. Two women were being 
treated for injuries described by police as "very serious." Their names 
were not released,
but police said one is 18 years old and the other 26. A school 
representative said they suffered broken bones but were expected to recover.

The accident occurred on the southeast

Click on image to enlarge ( | )
corner of West Mineral Avenue and South Utica Drive. The 21-year-old 
female driver of the car apparently slid on ice as she turned right onto 
Mineral Avenue
from northbound Utica Drive and lost control of her vehicle.

Littleton police spokesman Sean Dugan said the ice was a contributing 
factor. But the driver, who has not been named, will be charged after 
the investigation
is completed, he said.

"Our hearts really go out to the family members of all three victims and 
to the person responsible for the accident," Dugan said. "You've got a 
person who feels terrible about what she's done."

Officials from the school said the students' blindness had nothing to do 
with the accident.

Julie Deden, executive director of the Colorado Center for the Blind, 
said Nanney was a leader to the 25 students at the school. Students 
typically attend
for nine-month training in life skills, Braille and other areas.

Just recently, Nanney helped organize a Christmas giveaway to a family 
adopted by the students for the holiday. Nanney arranged to secure the 
gifts and
was at the family's home Thursday to deliver the goodies.

"The gentleman was such a leader," Deden said of Nanney.

Nanney's wife said her husband was an accomplished carpenter and 
home-improvement contractor in Baltimore. He made custom pieces, and his 
only form of advertising
was word of mouth.

"He was a real artist," Ann Nanney said.

Nanney started losing his eyesight about 10 years ago, his wife said. 
They later learned he suffered from retinitis pigmentosa, a disease that 
damages the
retina — leading to loss of vision — and gets worse over time.

The Nanneys were married for 20 years and have a 19- year-old daughter 
who is in college.

Ann said her husband was as happy at the CCB as he had ever been in his 

"He was a good person when he went to the Colorado Center for the Blind, 
but this morning when he got out of bed, he was a better person," Ann 
Nanney said
Friday. "He grew so much there."

Nanney was a musician. He played acoustic guitar and recently performed 
with his roommate, Jay Pellis, at the Mellow Mushroom in Centennial.

Neighbors of the Pinnacle at Mountain Gate apartment complex where he 
and the other students lived enjoyed his music so much they didn't mind 
at all that
Nanney played for hours on his balcony.

"His voice was like an angel," said neighbor Coraleen Ekstrom, who burst 
into tears when she learned of his death. "Music was definitely one of 
his passions."

Fellow CCB student Kenny Flack said Nanney was well liked by everyone.

"He would joke and laugh and make you feel part of the group," Flack 
said. "He made you feel at home. If you had a problem, he would lift you 

Deden said she spoke with Ann Nanney on Friday when she notified her of 
her husband's death and the first thing Ann said was to make sure 
Nanney's organs
were donated to others.

The CCB canceled the holiday party and plans to have a memorial for 
Nanney when students return in two weeks.

"We are like a family," Deden said. "It is going to be difficult."

Howard Pankratz: 303-954-1939 or
hpankratz at denverpost.com

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