At 17, Deon van Danville boarded the express train of adulthood, his heart humming with the rhythm of the steel tracks. The South African Railways and Harbours became his launchpad, propelling him into the world of technical mastery. College diplomas stacked like train cars until, in 1975, fate threw a cruel switch – legal blindness. Deon, however, refused to derail. He navigated the Personnel Office with newfound grit, his resilience echoing in the tap-tap of typewriters.
The Army's mandatory call up came, but instead of border skirmishes, Deon found himself at Voortrekkerhoogte, wielding knowledge against a different enemy. While friends pursued cars, Deon saved, his sights set on a higher summit – Stellenbosch University. In 1976, he conquered academia, the State President himself handing him the diploma. Deon, ever the maverick, left his toga behind, the real celebration unfolding as he gifted his mother the degree on her birthday, her face alight with a pride brighter than any locomotive's headlight.
Potchefstroom became his next stop, post-graduate whispers of Communication calling him forth. The small, diverse class became his launchpad, and in 1979, he soared beyond textbooks, embracing the very sky itself. The world's first solo blind parachute jump etched his name in the clouds, graduation a mere footnote in his defiance of gravity.
Nightshifts and Pretoria University became his symphony of ambition. Tape recorders and typewriters his loyal instruments, he wrote his exams in hushed rooms, whispers from guardians weaving stories of knowledge on cassettes. Technology, then in its infancy, was a distant whistle on the horizon, but Deon had the Tape Aids for the Blind, their volunteers his invisible wings.
Love, at 29, landed like a gentle feather on his extraordinary journey. Deon van Danville's story wasn't just about conquering darkness, it was about defying limitations, both personal and societal. He rode the iron tracks of ambition, not just of trains, but of a spirit that refused to be confined. His legacy, a testament to resilience and innovation, whispers to all who dare to dream beyond the horizon, reminding them that the most breathtaking views often lie above the perceived boundaries.
All content published in this post is an expression of Deon van Danville’s life growing up. The author has no right over this content and has published it only after taking consent from the writer which here in this case is: Deon van Danville
Source: Deon van Danville Facebook Feed
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