He wanted his blind daughter to be able to hunt Easter eggs. So he got creative.

11-year-old Rachel Hyche has been blind since she came home from the hospital.

"Rachel rides horses, watches movies, drives a golf cart, roller skates, and does most things other kids her age do," her father, David, told Upworthy. "Some of the things are done a little different but we usually find a way."

David says that at just 18 months old, Rachel was a confident toddler whose self-affirming favorite phrase was "I do it by self." But, when Easter rolled around that year, David realized there was a problem — how could Rachel participate in an Easter egg hunt if she couldn't see the brightly colored eggs?


Photo by Bianca Spelt/AFP/Getty Images.

He had been asked to help plan the Easter egg hunt for his local church in Alabama, and he wanted Rachel to be able to participate. With her insistence on doing everything "by self," he was determined to find a way for her to do so without parental assistance. David needed a way to let Rachel be her independent egg-hunting self without cramping her style.

Rachel might be visually impaired, but her hearing was totally fine — and that's when David found the perfect solution:

Easter eggs that beep.

It took some quick research online, but thanks to his day job as a bomb technician, David knew a thing or two about electronics and was able to craft an innovative beeping egg for his daughter.

Made with simple components and a 9 volt battery. Photo provided by David Hyche, used with permission.

The idea was well-received by both kids and their parents.

"The kids really enjoy being able to do this activity by themselves. I have seen kids grow in confidence before my eyes and parents change their attitudes about what activities their kids can do with a little modification," David said, noting that letting Rachel try anything and everything she wants can be difficult at times.

"I learned from my Rachel not to decide for her what she likes and doesn’t like or what she can and cannot do. Sometimes this is hard. A skateboard comes to mind."

Photo provided by Captain Shajahan Jagtian, used with permission.

Teachers at schools for the visually impaired also fell in love with the idea and started using the eggs for lessons beyond the Easter hunt.

"Teachers for the blind have also used the eggs year-round to teach location skills. I noticed early on that my daughter had trouble finding items she dropped or lost. The eggs teach the kids to search in three dimensions, not just on the floor," David explained.

In the last couple years, the beeping Easter eggs have spread to communities all over the country.

Bomb squads in Prince George County. Maryland, and Tampa Bay Florida, recently used crafting the eggs as a training exercise in soldering and circuitry as well as an opportunity to give back to the community.

"[The officers] really don't like to be out in the front of things so for us to use our skills to help kids that are not as fortunate as most makes all of us feel good," said Randall Mattson-Laurent of Tampa Bay.

Photo provided by Captain Shajahan Jagtiani, used with permission.

David Hyche has spent the past decade working on other innovative Easter ideas to help even more kids with disabilities.

"This year I built and tried a vibrating egg that I believe will allow kids who are both deaf and blind to participate next year," he told Upworthy. "I believe that the kids will be able to locate the eggs through vibrations if we place them on a wood floor."

David knows that simple modifications like these can truly help kids with disabilities feel included, just like they did for his daughter.

David and his daughter Rachel. Photo provided by David Hyche, used with permission.

"I really enjoy the exposure that the blind and visually impaired kids and adults get through this project," he said. "I had never known a blind person prior to Rachel and I was nervous around them at first. I think that the more that the public understands anything that they are not familiar with, the more it will be accepted."

As for Rachel, she's outgrown the Easter egg hunts, but has inherited her dad's helpful spirit.

"As a self-described, 11-year-old pre-teen, my daughter claims to be too grown up to hunt eggs," he says. "We now move into the phase of her helping other kids during the event. She still gets candy."

More
Courtesy of Houseplant.

In America, one dumb mistake can hang over your head forever.

Nearly 30% of the American adult population — about 70 million people — have at least one criminal conviction that can prevent them from being treated equally when it comes to everything from job and housing opportunities to child custody.

Twenty million of these Americans have felony convictions that can destroy their chances of making a comfortable living and prevents them from voting out the lawmakers who imprisoned them.

Many of these convictions are drug-related and stem from the War on Drugs that began in the U.S. '80s. This war has unfairly targeted the minority community, especially African-Americans.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

Climate change is happening because the earth is warming at an accelerated rate, a significant portion of that acceleration is due to human activity, and not taking measures to mitigate it will have disastrous consequences for life as we know it.

In other words: Earth is heating up, it's kinda our fault, and if we don't fix it, we're screwed.

This is the consensus of the vast majority of the world's scientists who study such things for a living. Case closed. End of story.

How do we know this to be true? Because pretty much every reputable scientific organization on the planet has examined and endorsed these conclusions. Thousands of climate studies have been done, and multiple peer-reviewed studies have been done on those studies, showing that somewhere between 84 and 97 percent of active climate science experts support these conclusions. In fact, the majority of those studies put the consensus well above 90%.

Keep Reading Show less
Nature
via James Anderson

Two years ago, a tweet featuring the invoice for a fixed boiler went viral because the customer, a 91-year-old woman with leukemia, received the services for free.

"No charge for this lady under any circumstances," the invoice read. "We will be available 24 hours to help her and keep her as comfortable as possible."

The repair was done by James Anderson, 52, a father-of-five from Burnley, England. "James is an absolute star, it was overwhelming to see that it cost nothing," the woman's daughter told CNN.

Keep Reading Show less
Heroes

I live in a family with various food intolerances. Thankfully, none of them are super serious, but we are familiar with the challenges of finding alternatives to certain foods, constantly checking labels, and asking restaurants about their ingredients.

In our family, if someone accidentally eats something they shouldn't, it's mainly a bit of inconvenient discomfort. For those with truly life-threatening food allergies, the stakes are much higher.

I can't imagine the ongoing stress of deadly allergy, especially for parents trying to keep their little ones safe.

Keep Reading Show less
popular