U.S. & World

California teen helps blind, deaf man on plane

CALABASAS, CA (CNN) -- A California teen stepped up to help a man who is blind and deaf on her flight. 

She's been studying sign language for less than a year, but her skills were good enough to help the man communicate and to help keep him company. 

Clara Daly and her mom were flying home from Massachusetts when a flight attendant asked if anyone knew American Sign Language. 

"So then I pressed the call button. And then she came, and she was like said, "So we have a passenger on the plane who's blind and deaf, so do you know how to finger spell?' And I was like, 'Yeah I totally know how to finger spell,'" she said. 

She signed each letter in every word so that the man you could feel her hands. 

"They thought that he might need something and they weren't sure how to communicate," she said. 

She says the man named Tim told her he would like water and asked how much time was left in the flight. 

And then he asked for Clara again. 

"He like didn't need anything. He was just like lonely and wanted to talk," she said.

So she did, for the last hour of the flight. 

"I was thinking wow this is really cool, I hope I don't spell anything wrong," she laughed. 

Clara is dyslexic. 

"English is already a hard language for me!" she said. 

And she only started learning sign ASL about a year ago. 

"I saw sign language as a way to communicate without having to read and write," she said. 

Her parents, Jane and Bill, say they could not be prouder of their daughter. 

Mom was so proud she posted about Monday's flight on Facebook. 

"I just felt like that was a story that people would want to hear," Jane Daly. 

And many people did.

Clara's story has since gone viral.

"I think it's weird that like it's getting so much attention," Clara said. 

Because she says "doing something like that is just like what anyone would have done." 

Dad says in addition to ASL people can also learn this from his daughter. 

"To open yourself up. To be there for others. And to look past our differences," he said. 


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