Helen Keller is famous for becoming an author and political activist and for attaining a bachelor's degree despite living with multiple impairments. During her time, most people who were deaf and/or blind suffered poor quality of life. Keller overcame the obstacle of multiple impairments to live a fulfilling and inspiring life, changing the standard of what was thought possible for people with disabilities.
When Helen Keller was nineteen months old, she suffered a fever which left her unable to see or hear. During her early childhood she developed some signs to communicate with her family, but as they were all seeing- and hearing-enabled people who relied on other means of communication, Helen was often frustrated in her attempts to be understood by her family.
In 1886, Helen's mother read a story about another girl who was both deaf and blind becoming educated and better able to communicate. This inspired her parents to seek out a specialist who might be able to teach or recommend a teacher for Helen. In their pursuit, the family was referred to contact the Perkins Institute for the Blind in Boston. Anne Perkins, once a student at this school, was sent to become Helen's teacher. Anne successfully communicated with Helen through sign-in-hand and enabled her to better express herself and go on to obtain a formal education.