My Summers with Nancy

Ava Lee Holly

In 1945, the mother of a multiply disabled ten-year-old named Nancy engaged Ava Lee Holly as her childs companion and teacher, a role that Ava Lee would fill each summer over three years. In this poignant story, the effects of Nancys delayed education become apparent as Ms. Holly calls upon her innate teaching ability to find ways to expand Nancys skills, and to help her explore and understand her surroundings. As Ava Lee tackles the challenges she also becomes acutely aware of the compensatory gifts that Nancy exhibits. Descriptions of these summer adventures provide insight into a world that most of us do not know. Ms. Holly hopes Nancys story will inspire others to assist the handicapped to develop their potential to its greatest extent starting in infancy and to become as independent as possible. Ava Lee Holly, legally blind since birth, graduated from a school for the blind. Limited resources prevented her from fulfilling her dream of going to college and becoming a teacher. She has, however, continued her lifelong love of learning through avid reading and has expressed her desire to teach whenever possible. Ms. Hollys husband, now deceased, was also legally blind. Her teaching and parenting skills are apparent in her three successful and loving daughters. Ms. Holly currently lives at the Santa Fe Care Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she is an active participant in their creative and dynamic activities program. Ms. Holly is also the author of A Time to Speak a biography of her husbands early life, her early life, and their lives together.