Amazing Individuals With Autism Provide Hope

autismNo one would ever wish their child to be diagnosed with autism, but every day hundreds of parents learn their child falls somewhere on the spectrum. It's a spectrum that's filled with plenty of heartache and hardship, but it's also not a death a sentence. Beyond any label or challenges are individuals with personalities, talents, and abilities to do amazing things.

TopTenz.net recently put together a list of The Top 10 People With Autism Known Today that portrays an amazing array of individuals doing amazing things. It's an eye-opening look for many about just what people with an autism diagnosis can do.

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For example, John Elder Robinson, author of the New York Times bestseller Look Me in the Eye, has had an exemplary career in electronics and mechanics, even working with famous bands like Pink Floyd and KISS. Today he owns his own car restoration business.

The creator of Pokeman, Satoshi Tajiri, has Asperger's. 

The list wouldn't be complete without Temple Grandin, educator and who actress Claire Danes portrayed in a movie about her life.

Others shine in sports. Number eight on the list is Jason McElwain, a high school student with autism who scored 20 points in the last four minutes of the final game of his team's season -- some from the three-point range. Go Jason!

Also on the list is Dawn Prince-Hughes, who has a PhD in primate anthropology. She's renowned for her work with gorillas and has written several well-received books. Others on the list are authors, writers, educators, and passionate advocates for autism awareness.

For parents who have recently received a diagnosis, it's easy to think worst case scenarios of children never able to live independently, never able to communicate or function in the "real" world, and there are some on the spectrum that do face that future. But there are also many who lead rich, rewarding lives even with the challenges autism brings, as this list highlights, and they shouldn't be forgotten either.

Do you know individuals with autism doing amazing things?


Image via Beverly & Pack/Flickr

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