Beating the odds: Without a voice - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Beating the odds: Without a voice

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -- People have major setbacks in life. Some allow it to hold them back and while others use their circumstances to help others grow. Over ten years ago Belinda Hardaway was diagnosed with a rare vocal disorder. And even though she speaks with a whisper her family says, people can hear her heart loud and clear.

Every Monday Ms. Hardaway volunteers at Memorial Hospital. Just by looking at her you would never know she speaks with a mere whisper. In 1997 she noticed her voice would leave periodically and in 1998 she was diagnosed with Spasmodic Dysphonia which is a rare vocal disorder. She says she was forced to retire from TVA. Hardaway's daughters said their mom went through depression after her diagnosis. Belinda's family said she couldn't let the disorder stop her.

Belinda volunteers for several organizations in Chattanooga and she and her daughter have launched a web site to help others who battle the same disease. She also does the majority of her communication through email and says she's picked up a couple of new hobbies like knitting and spending time with her grand kids.

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