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Paul Hedley

A Blind Man with Great Vision

I was born severely short sighted and so, wore glasses that resembled the bottoms of  coke bottles,for the first 36 years of my life. my glasses  and I were inseparable, as I couldn’t function without them, however they were often the source of much teasing and ridicule, particularly in my school years.

After Lasik surgery on both my eyes, in 1997, I no longer wore glasses.

 

As a result of  the severity of my short sightedness, my eye balls were somewhat oversize and about 10mm longer than a normally sighted person.

Which meant, there was considerable concern by my opthalmologists, that my retinas could easily detach, particularly if I received a blow to my head  or a sudden jolt, so as a result, I was unable to play contact sports like football etc.

Not to be deterred, I played grass hockey all through high school and ran around like all the other kids.

On leaving school I commenced work as an apprentice Fitter & Turner and as I have always had a passion for fixing things, my trade just gave me the ability to grow and hone these skills.

I worked as a maintenance fitter for around 28 years, in various industries. 

 

Paul Hedley 2

 

I also had a passion for modifying cars, in 2008, I completed a ground up build of a 1928 A model Ford Tudor, which had a V8 motor, whith lots of chrome and was painted bright orange.

In 2006, I needed a change in direction with my career, so I joined my current company as anInternal Technical salesperson.

After 2 years in this role, I was promoted into a product support engineers role.

This role involved travelling to mine sites  throughout the world, to assist our customers with troubleshooting and equipment upgrades, which again fed my passion for fixing things.

I was extremely successful in this role, eventually taking on our biggest global customers.

The pinnacle of my success, was landing a $24million  order.

During the course of my travels, I faced many challenges, I would often travel to remote locations in helicopters and light planes, in places like, Indonesia, Phillipinnes and Papua New Guinea, where quite often there were riots, shootings and a real threat of catching Malaria or some other tropical disease.

On one occasion I was in Manilla, and was deceived by a con man, who eventually convinced me to get into a taxi with him to go sight seeing, which turned into a sort of  kidnapping.

I managed to keep a cool head and relied on human greed to rescue me.

I figured if I gave them all of my money , they would ask for more, to which they would have to take me to an ATM, allowing me to get out of the taxi. disability doesn’t stop a person adding value to any workplace.

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