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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
November 4, 1994     The Message
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November 4, 1994

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November 4, 1994 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 3 Brett FaFthurn r finds few boundaries as quadruple amputee Brett Eastburn speaks to Se ,,,.! ,, . students at Sts. Peter and Paul hvv,, naubstadt, about his life as a quadruple amputee. -- Message photo by Mary Ann Hughes . Following is "a feature " draw to-, - zn the Message, designed to help saer the People of God in southwestern Indiana. Readers are nmted,, t(o submit information about people who Vnay benefit by some extra prayers and attention. h" A Card shower is elp cell, .... planned to 21st birth" e 'lYoy Unfried's ,. . -uay. le Mem.orial Hi hool *turen S H " " MeL. _ os Ital m . ""PillS, Te,,- - ,, P august ,) t ""', muowing an Plant. -" none marrow trans- Unfried is doi though ,_ . ng well al- Side e'ffe':t:S^Weak due to' the an ..... .:  Chemotherapy " aulatlort treatmen _.A novena of " ts.  Uhuro, , vtasses is also nlanned for Troy at Holy Spirit Nv_5":'aVaasville. Masses for Troy will be held Saturday, and 9---'- p.m.. -, ,, ,.., undav, Nov 6, at 10"30 a m, and Nov 7, 8 ,,. "tara The'" - " .... Irtha.. ' " viasses are osen to the public. JUde's C%l cards may be addressed to: Troy Unfried, St. t101. H;-L'uren s Hospital, P.O. Box 318, Memphis, TN " ulrthday is November 9. ,S . held ricesfor Mary (Mattinl Ku kendall 74 were ,-c. 2u ....... Y) Y ' , 'a0the^. _ atlvity Church Evansville. She is the d 8:viv:saash:r Henry Kuykendall, pastor at NativitY.wo aUghter_ . "nclude her husband of 56 years Ha ; t and ] ' dUdy Tenn so , rry - "chal y n and Nancy Oskins; sons, Jerry i, a sister, Lillian Farthing; nine grandchildren, and four great.grandchildren" Please send information for PEOPLE WE CARE A/3OUT to IANn n Hughes, The Message, P.O. Box 4169, Vansv! , 47724 SiSter Larnping dies Oct. 26 for Franciscan Sis- Alethea) died Oct. 26, ct. 28 in Olden- tUght at Rex Mundi gh School, both le. From 1990 to a member of the for the Fran- & MILLER "A family name you can trust" 424-9274" By MARY ANN HUGHES Message staff writer Shortly after Brett Eastburn finished talking with students at Sts. Peter and Paul School, Haubstadt, a woman ap- proached him. She was with her three-year-old son and when she introduced him, Eastburn's eyes darkened. There, at her side, was a small child with no hand, but with a hook instead. Eastburn began talking softly with the child, asking him if he could play ball. Then he asked the mother where her son's arm ended, and if he had an elbow. As the three stood together talking, the little boy looked at Eastburn carefully, curious to meet someone who might un- derstand his own life. As he stared, the young child saw a twenty-something man with no arms and no legs. This quiet conversation, shadowed by tragedy, was a world away from Eastburn's presentation to the Haubstadt students. With them, he had commanded center stage, showing himself as upbeat, funny and self-depreciating. Since he was young, East- burn has lived in both worlds. There is the world of speeches and presentations, a world filled with travel and media in- terviews. Then, there's the world of motorized wheel- chairs, of specially-adapted vans, and questions. Lots of questions. When Eastburn visited with Haubstadt students during Red Ribbon Week, he was bom- barded with questions: How do you eat? (With my mouth.) Can you drive? (Yes.) How do you get dressed? (I wiggle into my clothes.) Eastburn told the students that the doctors could offer no Landscaping Christmas Trees & Decorations Washington, Indiana BILL GREENE JIM GREENE , INC. , 301B. S.E. 21ST STREET (812) 254-5768 - WASHINGTON, IN 47501 FAX (812) 254-5766 I medical reason for his condi- tion. His parents had no his- tory of drug abuse and he wasn't a Thalidomide baby. A1- though the doctors couldn't provide answers, Eastburn has one. "I believe God made me like this." He says his parents taught him at a very early age to be independent. He tells a story about his mother leaving him in a rocker one day, and realiz- ing as she was leaving the room that he was starting to climb out of it. Her dilemma was to con- tinue out of the room, knowing he would fall, or to turn back and help him. She made the decision to leave the room, and he began learning ways to be- come mobile. "I landed on my nose," he said, "and I was mad at her. But since then, I've thanked her." He says he's not profound enough to find the words to thank his parents for what they've done for him, and he is beginning to realize how hard it must have been for them to "step back and let me do things for myself. They never said that I was a 'little handicapped kid,' and so I just went and did things." By the time he was in the fifth grade, he had made the decision to give up his pros- thetic equipment, believing the "fake arms and legs were there for cosmetic reasons, to make me look like every other kid. I was born without legs and arms" and the prostheses "rep- resented something that I wasn't." With a "can do" attitude, he joined a basketball team in ju- nior high school and became a varsity wrestler in high school. Along the way, he also partici- pated in baseball, swimming and marital arts and refined his skills as an artist. When he finished high school, he began a speaking ca- reer that has taken him across the United States and to Japan. When he speaks to stu- dents, he talks about self-im- provement and drug preven- tion. As he starts each speech: he always asks students what they think the word 'handi- capped' means. Then he in- forms them that handicap is a thing, not a person, and that a person who looks handicapped may not be. "They may go far- ther along than you, because they are using their potential." In Haubstadt, Eastburn en- couraged the students to stay away from the two greatest handicaps to their future: drugs and excuses. "I could make excuses all day long, and get away with it, but I don't." He concluded his speech with the question, "How many people here think I'm cool?" After receiving a round of ap- plause, he smiled as he told the students his secret: "First, I like myself. Second, I set my goals, and third, I go after them.  II II I Hi-Tech Sheet Metal Inc. Residential, Industrial & Commercial Heating & Cooling Installation Sales & Service 1422-92421 Operated by Michael and Particle Koch 15 S. 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