Blind student at Temple City High finds light in the darkness

August 28, 2018
Federico Hernandez does not want your sympathy. He does not want your pity. He simply wants to be treated like everyone else. “He does not want to be associated with having a visual impairment,” Temple City High teacher Grant Rowe said. “Even though it’s obvious he does. He walks in with a white cane and he’s reading brail.” Federico has been blind as long as he can remember. He was diagnosed with retinoblastoma, a rare form of eye cancer that nearly cost him his life. Federico underwent enucleation, a surgical procedure that removes the entire eye. It left Federico without his vision, but grateful to be alive. “You learn to live with darkness that you live with every day,” Federico said. “You just have to live your life as normal as you can.” No one can question the grit of Federico Hernandez. A two-time cancer survivor, Federico is determined to not be seen as someone with a disability, but as someone who is an equal. “He’s been through quite a bit as a person. He’s gone through a lot of physical hardships and emotional hardships. And it inspires me because he bounces right back up literally and figuratively. And I hope to be like him when I grow up.” - Longden Elementary co-principal and former Temple City High assistant principal Aaron Chang
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