Imagine yourself separated from your loving family at the age of eleven and sent to an institution intended for the feebleminded, and living your eighty years of life in a body that doesn’t work properly; not able to walk, talk, feed yourself or make sense of your place in the world? Buddy’s Story, a fictional memoir, is based on the life of Bernard Akerman, born in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1920. Buddy, afflicted with cerebral palsy, unfortunately labelled a “crippled idiot”, is finally given a voice to tell the story of his life. He lived during a time when the handicapped were locked away, an embarrassment and a burden to their families and society. His niece, Ellen, finds her voice, no longer silenced by the family taboo of not talking about what has always been an ache in her heart. Many years after Buddy’s death she was able to return her uncle’s love by dedicating a stone on his final resting place. Buddy learned to live in the moment, with humour, insight, love, and compassion. Buddy’s Story, is about family, courage, and the power of ancestry. It is a story of love and hope that crosses the boundaries of genre forms.
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