Russell C. Williams -A Journey Well Traveled
This book tells the story of one man’s exceptional courage and determination in not only coping with blindness, but attaining greatness while in the service of humanity. Russell C. Williams was born and raised in a small industrial Indiana town during the Great Depression. He worked for two years in factories before attending college. After attaining his degree in education, he taught high school and coached in a small rural high school.
When WWII broke out, Williams entered the Army. In France, he was severely wounded in combat in in the shoulder and face, rendering him totally blind and without a sense of smell. Following medical treatment, Williams underwent blind adjustment training at the Army’s Valley Forge and Avon Old Farms Hospitals. After training, he was selected to join the Valley Forge staff as counselor/teacher.
During the remainder of his life, Williams would not only adapt to his blindness, but would become an international leader in reshaping the field of blind rehabilitation. In 1948, he became the Chief of the first VA Blind Rehabilitation Center at Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital. Under his unique stewardship he introduced many innovative programs and skill sets for blinded veterans, which became a model for the field. Later, Williams became the Chief of VA Blind Rehabilitation Services in VA Central Office in Washington, DC, overseeing national programs for blinded veterans. Under his skillful guidance, services significantly expanded in capacity, diversity, and quality.
Williams received many accolades and awards, recognizing him as a national authority on blindness. A valued speaker, educator, writer, statesman, and articulate historian, he was a major force in raising society’s awareness of the needs and potential of its severely visually impaired citizens.
Predisposed by the blending of extraordinary world events and, at times, personal tragedies, Russell C. Williams’ life is a tribute to the resiliency of the human spirit.
7 by 10, illustrated, 312 pages, $24.95 plus $6 s/h