Florida girl who captured hearts with first sign language video going global once again

U.S. & World

TAMPA (WFLA) — When we first met little Claire Koch in 2013, our hearts melted instantly. And, we weren’t alone.  

She became an internet sensation overnight, loved by millions of people all over the world. 

Her enthusiasm and energy enchanted everyone. 

It wasn’t what the Clearwater kindergartner said, but what she did that made us fall for her. 

The 5-year-old communicated through sign language during her Christmas concert at school.

She said she wanted to make sure her parents knew exactly what she was saying, as she energetically signed in the front row. Both her mother and father are deaf. 

They taught Claire and her little sister sign language from the very start. It was the first language Claire ever learned. 

Now, five years later, this adorable little girl is 10 years old. 

She is gaining video fame once again. 

This time, underwater.

Her parents are longtime diving enthusiasts. They couldn’t wait to see her scuba certified. 

When she turned 10, she did just that, and even went a step further. 

Her love for sign language is now leaving land and plunging below, doing her diving course through signing. 

She loves the time that she gets to spend with her father.

“I’ve seen videos of what my dad does, and I thought I want to do that.  So I just really wanted to,” Claire said.

As it turns out, her dad was the world’s first deaf diving instructor. 

“If we have problems that we don’t have a dive sign for, it’s easier if we use sign language instead,” she said.

“When I teach, I stay in the water the whole time. Just sign the whole time. Talk talk talk talk. We can talk about baseball games, hockey games underwater,” said her dad, Thomas.

The daddy–daughter team captured every moment on video, never knowing they would also capture the hearts of PADI, the Professional Association of Diving Instructors. 

PADI has since posted the video on its Facebook page and it has been shared hundreds and hundreds of times over with people all over the world. 

In the end, this little girl has gone global once again, showing that actions really do speak louder than words. 


Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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