Camel's Calf Online - The May 2013 Edition of the Camel's Calf is now online. You can go here to download it.
Timmy Kelly loves life. He loves life so much he couldn't wait to get started. Timmy was born very premature at 26 weeks, weighing only 1 lb 15oz at birth. He spent his first four months at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). When he was only 9 days old he underwent his first surgery on his heart. When he was 3 months old, he began having problems with his eyes. Despite numerous surgeries on his eyes Timmy was diagnosed with blindness. At 18 months he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. You might think that being blind and having cerebral palsy would be a major setback, not so for Timmy Kelly. Blindness and cerebral palsy have only proven to be a "bump in the road". It was clear from the beginning that Timmy would be a fighter. Timmy is now 18 years old and has undergone 26 different surgeries.
Timmy is the youngest blind child in the history of the school district of Philadelphia to be mainstreamed. He attended kindergarten through third grade in the Philadelphia School District where he learned to read and write braille. He was required to complete all assignments in braille. Timmy is 18 years old and is currently a senior, Honor Student at Lower Moreland High School in Huntingdon Valley, PA. He has been selected as part of "Who's Who among Outstanding Middle School Students in America". In addition to "typical school work" Timmy has orientation and mobility, occupational therapy, physical therapy and vision support. He also participates in chorus and drama class and has acted in the school plays.
On November 10, 2004 Timmy received the 45th Annual Louis Braille Award, presented by the Associated Services for the Blind & Visually Impaired. "Over the past 45 years, Associated Services for the Blind & Visually Impaired has celebrated the accomplishments of people who are blind or visually impaired and the efforts or organizations and individuals to promote independence for those with a visual disability". Timmy is the youngest recipient to ever receive this award. In 2004 Timmy also received the Learning through Listening Achievement Award from The Philadelphia Unit of Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic (RFB&D). "The first annual award in honor of an exceptional RFB&D member presented to Timmy Kelly". In June 2010, Timmy was honored by SPIN (Special People in the Northeast) as the first recipient of the "Alumni Award".
Timmy has been featured on the CBS Early Show on a segment called "Extraordinary People". The segment can be found at: http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=4092079n
Timmy has been gifted with "the voice of an angel". He performed his first solo at age four at his pre-kindergarten graduation ceremony. Since that time he has developed quite an impressive resume. Here are some of the highlights:
*Philadelphia EAGLES. Timmy is well known in and around the Delaware Valley for his performances of the National Anthem for the Philadelphia Eagles football team. He first sang for the Eagles when he was only 10. Since that time, Timmy sings at least once a year and is the "go to guy" for the playoffs. One of his most memorable experiences was singing the National Anthem at the NFC Championship Game for the EAGLES vs. Atlanta Falcons. It was a frigid day in January, with a 5 degree temperature, wind gusts of 35 to 40 mph and actively snowing at game time. It was indeed a challenge, but one that Timmy handled as a true professional. Of course the EAGLES won and went on to the Super Bowl. The following article talks about Timmy's relationship with the EAGLES:
*Philadelphia Phillies, including a performance of God Bless America in Game Five of the National League Champions Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2009.
*Timmy has performed at the Irish Festival in Wildwood New Jersey for the past several years, singing a variety of Irish favorites. He was also the Grand Marshal for the Parade as well.
*Performed the National Anthem for then Senator, now President Barack Obama. Click on the link to hear Senator Barack Obama sing Happy Birthday to Timmy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Bqo88UYPmg
In addition to singing, Timmy has also delivered motivational speeches throughout the country for the Shriners Organization. Including North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, California, Texas, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina, Virginia, Maine, Kansas and Oklahoma. Click the website to read the article and watch the video of Timmy addressing students in Tulsa Oklahoma. http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?subjectid=323&articleid=20090901_81_A11_TimmyK323284&rss_lnk=11
Timmy was featured on Access Hollywood's Inaugural "Access to a Dream". Click on the following link to read the story: http://blogs.accesshollywood.com/archives/2007/02/access-to-a-dream-timmys-big-d.html
As a way of "giving back to the community" Timmy performs at numerous charitable events including the following:
*Maxwell Football Awards in Atlantic City New Jersey
*Coaches vs Cancer in Philadelphia (2011 Timmy opened for Frankie Valli)
*President George W. Bush
First Lady Mrs. Laura Bush
*Governor Ed Rendell's Inaugurations (2003, 2007)
*Live on Good Morning America
*Opened for Jonas Brothers in Philadelphia
*Philadelphia Saint Patrick's Day Parade (since 2003)
*The United Cerebral Palsy Foundation
*EAGLES Fly for Leukemia
*Dr. Theodore Atlas Foundation (Teddy Atlas) in Staten Island New York
*The Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired
*Michael's Way Foundation
* The Sunshine Foundation
*The March of Dimes
*Million Dollar Roundtable Foundation (New Orleans & San Diego)
*EAST WEST Shrine Football Games (2005 San Francisco Cal & 2007 Houston Texas).