August 22, 2013 |
"Wampler's Ascent" is certainly an inspiring story: Stephen J. Wampler, who turns 45 this week, has been afflicted with cerebral palsy since birth, but he doesn't let that stop him from climbing El Capitan, one of the biggest rock faces in the world. His goal is to reach the top, of course, but also to raise awareness and funding for Camp Wamp, a wilderness experience for physically disabled kids. As cinema, however, the film comes up short. The documentary by Stephen's wife, Elizabeth, charts his incredible undertaking through newscasts about the feat and home video shot during his six-day ascent.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 22, 2013 |
Nothing seemed out of the ordinary at Frances Blend Elementary on the last day of school. Boxes of pastries were picked over by teachers and staff as they smiled and wished each other a good summer vacation. Aides and office personnel gave out hugs and accepted gifts from students. But the Larchmont school, as they know it, will be different come fall. The beloved special school for the blind will join with neighboring Van Ness Elementary to create what's called "an integrated learning community," Los Angeles Unified School District officials said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 27, 2013 |
A 53-year-old Glendale man pleaded not guilty this week to charges that he pulled a man out of his wheelchair and stole it so he could use it as a prop for panhandling, police said. Prosecutors charged Phillip Papineau with felony grand theft and felony petty theft with priors in connection with the theft of David Baysinger's wheelchair, according to a Los Angeles County Superior Court criminal complaint. Papineau was arrested about 4 p.m. April 20 on suspicion of robbery at the Tropico Motel in the 400 block of West Chevy Chase Drive, where Baysinger, 57, of Glendale told officers Papineau was staying, according to Glendale police.
March 30, 2013 |
Day 1 My anxiety grows as I get to Larkspur, several hours into my drive to Spirit Rock. I stop for a snack, worried the food will be hippie-style brown rice casseroles. When I pull into the parking lot, I'm told I can carry my bags up the hill or put them in a pickup. I heft them, worried it's too indulgent to do otherwise. Later, walking to dinner, people talk tentatively; it's our last chance to speak to one another, and rather than motivating a full-on chat stream, that makes me pretty uninterested in small talk.
March 28, 2013 |
If Simi Valley High baseball players ever get lazy or start complaining about something innocuous, such as who has to rake the mound, they are usually snapped back to reality by simply watching the determination of senior outfielder Cody Jones. "I have an inspirational story," Jones said, "Why not help out and brighten their day?" To understand the commitment and love of baseball exhibited by Jones, you must go back to when he was 6 years old and trying out for a youth team. He couldn't use his left hand because his left side had been weakened when oxygen was briefly cut off from his brain during a troubled childbirth, leaving him with cerebral palsy.
September 14, 2012
Re "Finding a voice," Opinion, Sept. 9 There was a large lump in my throat as I read the beautiful account by Deena Goldstone of her daughter, who has just gotten a writing job - not because of her disability but because of her ability. My son is a 35-year-old with cerebral palsy who is also visually impaired. His only way of communicating is through speech that sometimes falters, but he too has benefited from technology and has a wonderful curiosity about the world. I felt a common bond with Goldstone and her husband in the daily advocacy and research that parents of children with special needs find themselves suddenly placed in. Thank you for this truly inspiring account.