Mexicans with visual impairment making an impact

Text by Reddit user Blind Insider

In Mexico, September is thought of as the national month, because on the 16th we celebrate our independence and what better way to get festive than to recognize some extraordinary Mexicans with visual disabilities who have managed to exalt the name of our country.

We know their stories will be able to positively impact all those who are looking for inspiration to move forward.

Here is a little of the lives of these incredible Mexicans who made the impossible possible:

Alexis Arroyo aka Ojitos de Huevo

He was born blind in 1994 in Queretaro, Mexico. He is a journalist, writer and stand-up comedian who has proven to be a great talent on stage.

From early childhood he showed an interest for comedy. At the age of six he listened to comedy songs and admired the people who made other people laugh.

He always liked the idea of being the center of attention and entertaining people; he also enjoys singing and the theater.

He started dabbing into stand-up comedy, after accompanying a friend who at that time was a DJ at a bar and on that occasion they told him that he could go on stage on amateur night and he performed great.

He hasn't let go of the microphone ever since. Following on that great experience, he had his first appearance on television. Afterwards he would appear on his first shows that would bring him his big break.

In 2015 he appeared in Comedy Central and was the winner of Telehit's 'Stand wars' in 2017.  This granted him a special program broadcasted throughout Latin America.

Off stage, Alexis Arroyo is an activist for the inclusion of people with disabilities and shares his work through his YouTube channel

Manuel Eduardo Cortez Vallejo

He was born in the state of Monterrey and is the creator of two applications for people with visual disabilities:

The first is called DANI which stands for (Natural Intellectual Assisted Dactylography), which facilitates writing on computer keyboards; the second is TWBlue which allows visually impaired people to connect to Twitter granting a faster and more agile use of the social network.

Manuel has been blind since he was 14, however, his condition has not stopped this young man from Monterrey from becoming a successful software developer.

Contrary to popular belief, his disability has inspired him to create technological tools that help the visually impaired to have better opportunities.

Rafael Jaime Jaramillo

Rafa was born on June 24, 1988 in Salamanca, Guanajuato. He is a Paralympic triathlete. He is part of the Aquiles team, a group of high-performance triathletes.

He is the first visually-impaired Mexican to reach the top of the Denali, also known as Mount McKinley, the highest mountain in North America, with an altitude of 6190 m. It is located in the Alaska Range, in the south of Alaska.

When he was four years old, he was diagnosed with bilateral retinoblastoma, that is, cancer in his eyes. He lost his sight at the age of 18 when his left eye was removed and ever since, he has participated in more than 12 marathons and conferences. He is a cyclist, swimmer, runner and mountaineer. He has been the recipient of several awards and recognitions, such as being the first and only blind man to finish an Ultraman, the only blind climber of wall and rock in Mexico and the first blind ultradistance runner in Latin America.  

Gaudelia Díaz Romero also known as Crystal

Crystal was born in Acapulco, Guerrero, Mexico in 1965, a singer, actress and visually impaired athlete. She won gold in 400, 800 and 1500 meters flat, within the Para Pan American Games in Puerto Rico in 1991, and a year later she won bronze in three thousand meters flat (class B1) in the Paralympics of Barcelona in 1992.

After her career as an athlete, she returned to the artistic world in an important Mexican television network where she developed her artistic career for which she became famous.

These extraordinary Mexicans with visual disabilities have managed to fulfill great personal and professional goals without their condition being an impediment or a pretext to make their dreams come true.

Let's never forget that visual impairment is only a condition but not a limitation to do things, like we mentioned in our previous blog entry "Myths about visual impairment".

Finally we want to remind you that they are just a few examples of the thousands of visually impaired people who are fighting to change the idea that without eyesight nothing can be achieved.

So if you find yourself looking for a reason to keep going, remember their example and don't give up, turn your personal story into yet another success story.

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