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Daniel J. Vance is a licensed professional counselor and national certified counselor from Vernon Center, Minn. His weekly newspaper column Disabilities has been published in more than 260 newspapers. The archives date back to 2006 and many remain relevant and inspirational.

TBI Injured Man: Don’t Drink and Drive

In 1974, 16-year-old Todd "Odie" Bode was a backseat passenger when a "drunk driver came whipping across the lane and hit us head-on," said...

Asperger’s Teen Loves Legos and the Phillies

Recently, I featured 43-year-old New Jerseyan Dorothy Smaniotto, who has antiphosopholipid syndrome (APS), also called "sticky blood disease." In 2008, due to APS, she had two disabling strokes and a heart attack before doctors could figure out what was wrong.

Woman Taunted as a Teenager

My featured person this week agreed to be interviewed only under condition of anonymity. Janet" was born with

Double Amputee Lives for Yet Another Day

For personal reasons, "Billy" did not want his real name revealed here. He lives in the Midwest as a double-leg, below-knee amputee and has had more brushes with death

Bishop’s Rapid Decline Baffled Doctors

The sea change in Bradley Bishop happened almost overnight. "In February 2005, (Bradley) became suddenly ill, was diagnosed with encephalitis, and he was in...

Miracle League

In 1999, Dean Alford of Conyers, Georgia, was dreaming of building a special baseball field in his hometown so children with physical or mental disabilities could play baseball.

Businessman has Lou Gehrig’s Disease

This last December, 60-year-old Dan Hacker of Sleepy Eye, Minnesota, had a busy holiday season. He and his wife of 38 years, Lynn, own and manage one of the Midwest's largest wholesale/retail Christmas tree, garland, and wreath operations.

Adragna Lost Both Legs, Gained Empathy

Roseville, CA- Christmas Eve 1995 was a day Dan Adragna of Sacramento, California, would rather forget. He was only 30, but a diabetic.

Parkinson’s and Stroke Survivor Helps Others

In 1973, Renee Le Verrier was a 12-year-old girl playing with neighborhood friends. "Then the next thing I knew, I was on the neighbor's driveway on my back and couldn't get up,"

Divorce: Dispelling a Popular Myth

In my first decade involved in disability issues, I repeatedly heard people claim that marriages involving parents of children with disabilities had a divorce...