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The Story of Dr. Don Bartlette

 

Last updated 11/14/2015 at 4:04pm

Don Bartlette

Don Bartlette was born with fetal alcohol syndrome, a heart condition, severely disfigured and a cleft palate that robbed him of the ability to eat normally or speak at all. Young Don fought the odds, and in spite of his disabilities, extreme poverty, cultural prejudice, abuse and bullying, by the grace of God, Don has become the man he is today. An inspirational speaker, he has shared his story more than 10,000 times all across North America.

"The doctor who came from the valley into our log cabin in the hills looked at me, threw up his hands, and whispered to my father, 'You send him away. He doesn't belong in the valley community. He'll never learn like other children. He'll never speak like other children. You send him away.'"

Those were some of the first words spoken over a newborn Chippewa infant in 1939. Don Bartlette was born into the world in rural North Dakota with fetal alcohol syndrome, resulting in a life-threatening heart condition, emerging with only half of a nose, and suffering a debilitating cleft palate that ro...



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