ROBBINSVILLE, N.J. -Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes and Mercer County Freeholder Pasquale Colavita presented a local disability advocate, Archie "Cheech" Rue, with a certificate of appreciation today at his home in Robbinsville.
Hughes and Colavita visited Rue, who was born with cerebral palsy and has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, to acknowledge his efforts to assist the disabled community, especially his own friends within his living community, Project Freedom.
"Archie has accomplished so many great things and is a testament to making the most out of life, no matter the obstacles," said Hughes. "He is an inspiration to us all."
Rue, 42, was honored with a "Certificate of Appreciation" by Freeholder Colavita, a speech pathologist by training who taught Rue when Rue was a child.
"Archie is really a shining light to anyone who has ever met him and I'm so happy to be able to give him a token of our appreciation. He is a special person," Colavita said.
Rue was a teacher in his own right at Project Freedom, a nonprofit organization that develops and operates "barrier-free" housing for individuals with disabilities to allow them to live independently, as he helped his friends and neighbors master computer skills. Rue is also supported by Allies, Inc., a statewide nonprofit organization that provides job development and other support services to individuals with disabilities.
Rue has received an Andrew J. Murphy Award from Cerebral Palsy NJ, an award which is given to consumers who "live each day of their lives with courage, determination, confidence, and spirit."