North Carolina Retiree Honored for Her Commitment to Helping Others with Visual Impairments

Mary Connor awarded Hadley’s HEROES Award

WINNETKA, Ill., June 15, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Mary Connor, has lived with vision loss most her life, having been born with Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), an eye disease that most often affects premature infants, causing abnormal blood vessels to grow in the retina. Mary has limited vision in one eye, having lost her vision completely in her other eye due to ROP. 

Mary had access to many resources throughout her life, including Hadley, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, and the nation’s leader in distance and online learning for visually impaired adults from all 50 states and more than 100 countries for more than a century.

Hadley recently launched its new online learning platform,, built on many months of research and development and based on the needs, wants and desires of visually impaired adults. A highly personalized approach to learning, visitors are invited to create their own account and then, after selecting contrast and font color, text sizes and audio to their liking, are offered different learning avenues, all at no cost, and with the help of a live topic experts.

“Even though I lived with vision loss, as I got older, I was faced with new challenges that come with aging and diminished eyesight,” said Mary, who recently relocated from Queens, New York, to a retirement community in Charlotte, citing her desire to live in a warmer climate, meet people and learn new things in a community that was supportive and accommodating of her vision loss.

But it was in her own retirement community that Mary found new purpose. 

“So many of the residents I met since moving to this new facility are experiencing some form of vision loss. Many have no help, very few visitors.” Mary spends much of her personal time visiting with and assisting her neighbors by connecting them to resources, including Hadley. “Many of my neighbors with vision loss are alone most of the time. I try to visit them as often as I can, sometimes I show them tricks on their computer or phone, or sometimes we just talk.”

In recognition of her commitment to learning and being an ambassador for Hadley’s resources, Mary was awarded Hadley’s HEROES award, given to those who help further Hadley’s mission to create personalized learning opportunities that empower those with vision loss or blindness to thrive at home, at work and in their communities.

Media Contact: Joan Jaeger, [email protected]

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