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$5,060 pledged of $14,900 goal
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$5,060 pledged of $14,900 goal
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About this project

What If the Glass Breaks? is a project to fund publication of the story of disability-rights activist Bob Sampson. The book is being co-written by professional author Douglas Niles and Bob's daughter Patricia Sampson-Harkness, a retired special-needs teacher. It will be available in both print and ebook formats.

Bob's Story

Bob was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at age five and confined to a wheelchair by age eight, but that wasn't enough to hold him back. Growing up in the Chicago area during the Depression, he studied and worked hard, eventually earning a scholarship to law school. Before he could start classes, however, his scholarship was revoked because, he was told, "You can't practice law from a wheelchair!" 

Once again Bob proved his doubters wrong, working a night job to pay for college. In this way he graduated from Loyola, then completed DePaul's three-year law course in two years, and passed the Illinois bar exam on his first attempt. 

Bob went on to work for the city of Chicago, becoming a major influence in Mayor Daley's administration during the '50s and '60s. He also advised five U.S. presidents--Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, and Carter--on disability issues. In addition, he served as a vice president of United Airlines, where he acted as an important advocate for the disabled. Even before the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Bob implemented many policies to ease travel challenges for the disabled.

This great man, who was told he would not likely survive beyond his teenage years, lived to be 81, married, fathered three children, enjoyed many years as a beloved grandfather and great-grandfather, and was a regular guest on his friend Jerry Lewis' legendary telethons. 

Bob inspired countless people during his life. It is our goal to keep his story alive to inspire countless more.

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    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    Our sincere appreciation (every dollar helps) and listing in the book credits and on the book's Web site.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    The above, plus an ebook version of the text and a personal letter of thanks.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    All the above, plus an autographed paperback copy of the book.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    All of the above, plus an autographed limited-edition hardbound copy of the book.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    All of the above, plus one copy of every book in the Popcorn Press catalog.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    All of the above, plus free dinner at the book-release party at the Jury Room in Elkhorn, Wisconsin. (If you live within 100 miles, we'll even pick you up and drop you off.)

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    All of the above, plus one of our authors will fly to anywhere within the continental United States to autograph your copies of the book and take you to dinner.

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    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    All of the above, plus a dedication in the book and a hand-delivered, personalized commemorative plaque thanking you for your donation.

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Funding period

- (30 days)