myheart.png

JOURNALIST

 
 

 

RECENT STORIES:

THE GUARDIAN: 'It could be any of us': Arizona patient's sexual assault reveals lack of protection

Ross D Franklin/AP

Ross D Franklin/AP

Carolyn Tillman loves her job. Many would consider it thankless. And it is true that most of the people she works with cannot say thank you. Cerebral palsy, epilepsy, brain damage and other conditions can make that impossible. But, she says, in tending to a person’s every need – feeding, bathroom needs, repositioning – you really get to know them.

Sometimes, in the “total care” room at Gompers Habilitation Center in west Phoenix, she plays music. One day, she realized that every time Don’t Take the Girl by Tim McGraw came on, a male client would start to weep.


KJZZ: Longtime State-Run Arizona Training Program In Coolidge Will Close After Last Resident Dies

coolidge bedroom 20190130.jpg

It takes about an hour to drive from Phoenix to the town of Coolidge, and, once you’re there, another five minutes or so to travel the entire length of the town. Just over the city line, you’ll find the Arizona Training Program, often just called “Coolidge.” Deb Henretta’s brother has lived there since his brain was injured in a car accident at 16. Today he’s past 70, and Henretta says her brother considers his unit at Coolidge home.


LENNY LETTER: FAYE AND ME

ILLUSTRATION BY TIANXING WAN

ILLUSTRATION BY TIANXING WAN

As the mother of a child with Down Syndrome, I found myself in Faye, a woman decades older than me who chose to institutionalize her developmentally disabled children.

My mother tells a story about a phone call she’ll never forget. It was the summer of 1966. She was several months pregnant with her first child (me), biding her time by the pool of the Phoenix apartment complex where she and my dad were living. Her due date wasn’t till November, but they’d already picked out both boy and girl names.


PHOENIX NEW TIMES: Vintage John McCain: Dead at 81, He Was America's Senator, Not Arizona's

Gino Santa Maria

Gino Santa Maria

John McCain rubbed his hands together a lot.

He did it all the time — on the U.S. Senate floor, during campaign events, standing around — hands cradled, moving. It wasn’t a casual gesture. You could tell he was putting some force into it.


PHI DELTA KAPPAN: Writing better stories about students with disabilities

AMY SILVERMAN AND HER DAUGHTERS

AMY SILVERMAN AND HER DAUGHTERS

When our newborn daughter was diagnosed with Down syndrome, my husband Ray and I just stared at each other.

I’d been a journalist for more than a decade, covering politics and social welfare. But I had never met anyone with Down syndrome; I knew nothing about it.


PHOENIX MAGAZINE: Food, Flowers and Filth

JON ARVIZU

JON ARVIZU

Experts say vocational programs at Arizona public schools are under-realized at best, exploitative at worst. And they’re letting down students with disabilities.

For as long as her mother can remember, Sophia Landay has wanted to work with animals. Nothing exotic like the stuffed toy rhinoceros the 18-year-old hugs during a recent FaceTime conversation – just cats and dogs.


 
 

“Silverman’s fierce account of coming to terms with having a child with Down syndrome is at once precise, mordant, and compassionate, and ultimately is exquisitely human.”

— Julie Lythcott-Haims, New York Times bestselling
author of How to Raise an Adult