Patrick Henry Hughes plays in the marching band at the University of Louisville, but he's never seen a single football game. That's because Patrick was born blind. He's also unable to fully use his arms and legs, so Patrick uses a wheelchair to get around. How is it that someone who can't walk ended up in a marching band? Patrick's story is full of extraordinary questions like this.
Patrick was born without eyes and without the ability to straighten his arms and legs. In addition, he has had two steel rods attached to his spine because of scoliosis. In spite of all of his physical issues, Patrick has overcome the odds with the support of a wonderful family.
When he was only two years old, Patrick showed amazing promise on the piano. He learned songs by feel and memory, and by the time he was in elementary school, Patrick was playing the piano publicly. When he went to college at the University of Louisville, a teacher in the music program recommended he join the marching band. At first, Patrick and his family had no idea how that would work, but with the help of dedicated and loving father, he soon found himself on the field with the rest of the Louisville musicians.
When Patrick Hughes was born, his father’s first thought was that a lot of his dreams had been dashed. Patrick seemed destined for a life without many of the usual father–son bonding activities that his dad had been so excited about. But, as early as his toddler years, Patrick showed his family — and the world — that he was not going to let his disability slow him down.
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