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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

- Page 54

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - October 24, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta WvdnMdiy, October 24, 1973 LETHBRIDGE HERALD OXYGEN LEFT PREMATURE BABY BLIND By MARJORIE WILD HAMILTON (CP) Tami Boccaccio has been blind since the oxygen that saved her life six years ago when she was a premature baby in a hospital in- cubator caused separation of her retinas Her mother, Grace Boc- caccio, didn't know the baby was blind when she brought her home to her father. Dr. J G. Boccac- cio, and her older sister, Terri. Then one day when she was feeding Tami, Mrs. Boccaccio looked into the baby's eyes and knew something was terrible wrong. She seemed to see right through them. Doctors confirmed that Tami was blind. Since then she has had to be fitted with artificial eyes. Mrs. Boccaccio said that after her first shocked reaction, "I decided all we could do was look after her and give her love and then it's up to her." She has worked to make the child as independent as possible. She recalls Tami used to walk around the house with her hands outstretched to ward off objects. Her mother was determined she should learn to walk normally. At the time, Tami loved to hold spoons, so her mother put a spoon in each hand and told her if she dropped one, she wouldn't find it for her. Then she had a good cry while Tami, holding her precious spoons, learned to walk around without feeling her way. A big decision was made two years ago when Tami was enrolled at the nursery school at the Jewish Com- munity Centre. Elsie Anderson, who has taught Tami most of the time, said she was a bit wild when she arrived. Edna Hutchison, social worker among blind pre- school children for the Canadian National In- stitute for the Blind, said Tami almost exhausted the nursery school staff But she has learned to get along with the other children, to enjoy the school and even sometimes be one of its leaders. She spent part of the summer at a day camp for blind pre-schoolers, and the next big step comes this fall. She is enrolled in the Ontario School for the Blind at Brantford. She had visited the school with her parents, and chosen the bed she wants. Mrs. Boccaccio said she doesn't think Tami will be homesick. She had made it a point to have her stay overnight or for weekends with friends occasionally Now her mother has a new goal. She is going to learn braille so they can write to each other. Crunchy, munchy, chewy, gooey, sweet treats for the witching hour! IB boxes of Smarties 890 assorted bars 890 c-100 sticks of Wrigleys gum 990 d-37 miniature O'Henry's 890 e. 101 Bubble Gum Treats 990 f-101 tingles 890 g-3 Ib. of Kraft caramels '1.69 h-20-5c packs of Hostess potato chips Sears 1234 SblSq HDCEfiN ShOPPfR rOUB TOWN Satisfaction Guaranteed or Money 'naecl For Pre-Season Savings It pays to have a Sears All-Purpose Account Simpsons-Sears Ltd. at Simpsons-Sears you get the lines) guarantee or mawy refunded and free delivery STORE HOURS: Open Daily from a.m. to p.m. Thursday and Friday a.m. to p.m. Centre Village Mall Telephone 328-9231 ;