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By Steve Edelson

In some ways, very little has changed since I first met Frank Kineavy, then 15, on the baseball field at Manasquan High School.

He still knows no limits in spite of the physical limitations placed on him by cerebral palsy, and exudes a confidence and exuberance many able-bodied young men could never imagine even though communicating the simplest thought is a laborious exercise.

But as I saw him Tuesday in the Rutgers Athletic Center, a lot has changed, even since I saw him last a few years ago at Villanova, where he was one of the managers for the men’s basketball team.

Back then everyone knew him as he zipped around campus in his wheelchair, already the star of an award-winning, student-made documentary titled “Coming Off the DL,” which highlighted Kineavy and Nick Gaynor, a fellow student with cerebral palsy who served a manager for the women’s basketball team.

Now, in the offices of the sports information department, where Kineavy is a writer for Scarletknights.com, he’s entering the next stage of what is nothing short of an extraordinary life. He’s got two writing gigs right now, including one with Diversity Inc., and gets more done in a day than pretty much anyone I know.

Read the full story here.

 

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By Hannah Delacourt

Marie Holmes of Shallotte, N.C. is about $88 million richer after claiming her Powerball prize Monday in Raleigh. Her $188 million winning ticket was sold Feb. 11 at a local Scotchman convenience store. After consulting with her attorney, Holmes opted for the $127 million lump sum payment, for an after-tax winning of $87.9 million.

At a press conference Monday afternoon at the North Carolina Education Lottery headquarters, Holmes, a single mother of four, said she is grateful for the opportunities the win has created for her family.

“This is gonna make a huge difference for them,” she said speaking about her children. “They are going to live a comfortable life without struggling. Anything my kids ask for, I can get it for them.”

Until recently, Holmes said she supported her family by working jobs at Wal-Mart, Food Lion, KFC, McDonald’s and Subway. While Holmes said she has not fully processed the win just yet, she said the jackpot will not change her as a person. She said with the money she wants to finish her college degree in nursing and hopes to travel, having never been outside the United States.

Holmes also plans to tithe at church and charitable organizations for cerebral palsy, a disorder her 7-year-old son has.

Read the full story here.

 

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By Maureen Hodges

Alfie – one of four identical quads – has been living in his own silent world, unable to make noises or say his first words because of his severe cerebral palsy. Now that’s all about to change thanks to a revolutionary piece of equipment. And for the first time in his life Alfie will be able to talk, laugh and cry, just like his three brothers.

The youngster had a voice valve fitted this week. For parents Barrie Thomson and Becky Graham it is a huge milestone.

“He has been so frustrated at not being able to communicate with us. He heard his brothers, crying, laughing and generally making a noise, and he hasn’t been able to join in,” said Becky, 29.

Alfie’s condition means his muscles are very stiff and he needs regular physiotherapy. He has a tracheotomy tube to help him breathe and is fed through a peg into his stomach. He has no gag reflex, which means he cannot swallow or protect his airway, and needs 24-hour care.

“We are very excited about it. It will also help with his breathing. It is a real step forward,” said Becky, from Cargo, near Carlisle.

“Alfie is such a little fighter, and has come through so much,” she added.

Read the full story here.

 

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