Monday, February 27, 2017
My Account  | Login
Nashua-BoireFieldAirport;42.0;http://forecast.weather.gov/images/wtf/small/nskc.png;2017-02-27 22:18:41
Friday, May 16, 2014

New Hampshire mountaineer inspires Hudson Memorial seventh graders with insight on life

HUDSON – A lot of people may have heard about Nashua resident Randy Pierce, the one-time New England Patriots Super Fan, dedicated hiker and runner who lost his eyesight.

But for middle school students at Hudson Memorial School, his story of perseverance, dedication and love was all new. ...

Sign up to continue

Print subscriber?    Sign up for Full Access!

Please sign up for as low as 36 cents per day to continue viewing our website.

Digital subscribers receive

  • Unlimited access to all stories from nashuatelegraph.com on your computer, tablet or smart phone.
  • Access nashuatelegraph.com, view our digital edition or use our Full Access apps.
  • Get more information at nashuatelegraph.com/fullaccess
Sign up or Login

HUDSON – A lot of people may have heard about Nashua resident Randy Pierce, the one-time New England Patriots Super Fan, dedicated hiker and runner who lost his eyesight.

But for middle school students at Hudson Memorial School, his story of perseverance, dedication and love was all new.

Pierce spoke to the students Thursday with his guide, Autumn, his new service dog after his trusted companion Quinn died last year.

“When I went through school, I was fully sighted ... I loved investing in the experiences of life,” Pierce said. “I’m totally blind now. I don’t see light, I don’t see motion. I see absolutely nothing.”

Pierce explained that the same affliction that caused his blindness also affected his balance, causing him to spend time using a wheelchair in 2003. He said to students, “I want to show you how low I got and I want to show you how high I got.”

After no longer needing the wheelchair, Pierce went on to climb all 48 of the 4,000 foot high peaks in New Hampshire in three months with his late guide dog, who earned the nickname Mighty Quinn.

He challenged students to ask whether or not he was able to complete tasks they considered difficult without vision. Pierce had solutions for every question.

“The choice you make on how you respond to challenges will influence your life more than any challenge could,” he said.

Aside from self-confidence, Pierce emphasized the importance of community support in reaching goals.

“The more you give to community and friends, the better off you are,” he said. As an example, he described his befriending and hiking with NFL veteran Tedy Bruschi after Bruschi’s stroke in 2005. “Think about the power you have when you encourage somebody.”

Toward the end of the talk, one student asked Pierce if he would rather be treated as a person with disabilities, or like everyone else.

“We have so much more in common than what we have different,” he said. “I’d rather be a person who is blind, than a blind person—always a person first.”

He also said how he was happy to be known as a hiker because of his 48 peak endeavor, versus being known as a blind hiker.

He wrapped up by reminding students, “There are no limits...choose whatever you want, you always have the right to make a choice.”

Pierce’s adventures are far from over. He’s currently planning to hike Mt. Kilimanjaro in September 2015. He continues giving school presentations, and has several running events planned for this summer.

More information can be found at 2020visionquest.org.