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Jimmy G., who inspired the creation of this ReadAssist.org website, died on Saturday, July 13, 2002. Jimmy developed juvenile rheumatoid arthritis before he was three years old and was not expected to survive his teens. Through the dedication and with the help of his parents, especially that of his father, he lived to the age of 40.
Jimmy could never attend school, nor run outside to play. Books were his life and his escape. During the last three years of his life, he could not hold books open. He feared that he would be forced to get both his entertainment and information solely from the television, that his mind would turn to mush as he, out of necessity, was force-fed a diet of soap operas, game shows, and wrestling. He shuddered at the thought that he would never read again.
Then Jimmy discovered electronic reading; he was fortunate enough to get a computer, and then an e-book reader. Reading was just a trackball click away, or the tap of a stylus; here he is demonstrating his methods to Eric Flint. Jimmy could enjoy books again! E-books saved both his spirit and his sanity.
ReadAssist.org was founded with the initial purpose of helping Jimmy manage paper books, because e-books are still scarce, and of finding easier ways for him to control his computer than by tapping the keys with a soda straw, as demonstrated at left for Jody Dorsett, Requirements Committee Chair, and Eric. ReadAssist's mission soon expanded to helping others who cannot move or see with finding and obtaining books, as well as software and hardware to assist them in using computers and books. ReadAssist.org will continue in this purpose, dedicating it to the memory of Jimmy G.
Click on the thumbnail images to see a full-size picture.