Kayleigh Postmus will be featured in Community Living British Columbia’s annual report and her story will also be shared in a book coming out this month.

Kayleigh Postmus will be featured in Community Living British Columbia’s annual report and her story will also be shared in a book coming out this month.

Girl’s ‘abilities’ put her in the spotlight

A 23-year-old Fruitvale resident has become the cover girl for a hard working role model in the province.

Though Kayleigh Postmus has had a seizure disorder since birth and among other challenges was diagnosed with autism at 17, her positive attitude and tremendous support from her family has landed her “super star” status.

Kayleigh, who is about to celebrate her four-year anniversary as a Wal-Mart employee, will be highlighted in the book “The Power of Knowing Each Other,” which was developed by Community Living of British Columbia (CLBC) and the Family Support Institute.

The book comes out this month and shares stories about informal safeguards told by B.C. families.

See POSTMUS, Page 3

From page 1

“We slept for many years with one foot on the floor, always listening to hear if she was having a seizure through the night,” said her dad, Ben Postmus. “What we found is you have to drive it yourself, no one else is going to do it for you.”

Kayleigh is beyond pumped about her tale from volunteer to paid employee being included in the book but is also flattered that she will be featured in CLBC’s annual report, which centres around stories of engaging families and self advocates.

“I was happy and shocked,” she said, when the Times caught up with her.

Kayleigh just returned from a quick trip to Vancouver with her dad, who captured the annual report photo shoot for CLBC, a provincial crown agency that delivers support and services to adults with developmental disabilities and their families.

“This is a huge motivator for families who have someone who is special needs. It’s a reminder that anything is possible,” said Ben, referring to his daughter’s succesful employment record.

With financial backing from CLBC and an eagerness from Wal-Mart, Karen Boutin was hired on as a job coach to provide support and direction to Kayleigh at work.

“Kaleigh has just excelled, she is definitely a role model for anybody who feels that they may not fit into the workforce,” said Trail Wal-Mart manager Chris Beblow. “It’s a huge accomplishment for her and we’re all proud of her at the store.”

Described as a “very personable, high energy gal,” Beblow said Kayleigh fits in great at the store, where she works in the garden centre. Among her duties, she is responsible for watering plants, facing shelves, unloading freight and changing prices on stock.

“I think a lot of employers look at it as a disability, when in fact anybody is capable of anything, it’s just finding the right position for the right person,” said Beblow, adding that Wal-Mart has about 170 employees, about six which have “different” needs.

“Just because somebody may have a disability, doesn’t mean they can’t be developed to learn something new and understand it,” he said. “It’s just a matter of how you approach the situation.”

The major sports fan was keen on getting a job so she could make some “moola” to support her passion for local hockey.

The Smoke Eaters and Nitehawks fanatic follows up on stats with local coaches and attends almost every game. She is also interested in writing, and tightens her skills by rewriting stories found in the sport’s section.

Coming from a family with three brothers, it’s no surprise that Kayleigh feels most at home watching her younger brother Arie play for the Nitehawks.

With her dad acting as a coach for the Special Olympics, she is also involved in bowling and bocce and plans to take part in floor hockey when it starts up locally for the first time this fall.

“This is a great thing for her, but more importantly it speaks hugely to the issue of people with disabilities and how valuable they are to the community,” said Ben. “I don’t see Kayleigh as a person with a disability but as a person with different abilities.”

Just Posted

In 1927, swimmers enjoyed a day in the water at the CGIT and CSET Camp in Summerland. While none of the people in this photograph have smart phones, there is some debate about whether a beach image from the United Kingdom in 1943 shows a man using a smart phone. (Photograph courtesy of the Summerland Museum)
COLUMN: The mystery of the time-travelling tourist

Was the man in a 1943 photograph checking his smart phone?

Daryl Jolly, his wife Kerry Pagdin, their sons Cole Jolly (left) and Graeme Jolly, and their dogs Gracie and Clover. Photo: Submitted
Selkirk College arts chair diagnosed with lung cancer, family launches fund drive

Daryl Jolly co-founded the college’s digital arts program

The flotation line at Gyro Park beach in East Trail, shown here during low water, is for emergency purposes only and does not delineate a safe swimming area. Photo: Trail Times file
City of Trail cautions beach users

Gyro Park beach questions should be directed to the roads superintendent at 250.364.0817.

Presently in Canada, it is illegal to be in possession of a personal stun gun. Use of this tool is only licensed to federal and provincial police officers. The personal use of stun guns by unlicensed civilians is considered to be illegal and considered under the Canadian Criminal Code to be the equivalent of a weapon. Anyone found importing or in possession of a personal stun gun and is not a licensed law enforcement officer can be prosecuted under the Canadian Criminal Code. Photo: BC RCMP
Trail man faces weapons charge after police confiscate stun gun

The incident took place on Sunday near downtown Trail

The Fruitvale community garden is located on Beaver Street across from the municipal office. Photo: Submitted
Harvest Central Community Garden opens in Fruitvale

A growing opportunity for all Beaver Valley residents, from kindergarten and upwards

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

The cannabis dispensary store, located at 1024 Clark Drive in East Vancouver. (Instagram/Budwayonclark)
Vancouver pot shop owner ordered to pay $40K for copying Subway

Store’s mascot is a red-eyed, cannabis-filled smoking sandwich

A health-care worker holds up a sign signalling she needs more COVID-19 vaccines at the ‘hockey hub’ mass vaccination facility at the CAA Centre during the COVID-19 pandemic in Brampton, Ont., on Friday, June 4, 2021. This NHL-sized hockey rink is one of CanadaÕs largest vaccination centres. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
‘Vaxxed to the max’: Feds launch Ask an Expert campaign to encourage COVID shots

Survey shows that confidence in vaccines has risen this spring

Port Alberni court house (Alberni Valley News)
Inquest set into 2016 death of B.C. teen after a day spent in police custody

18-year-old Jocelyn George died of heart failure in hospital after spending time in jail cell

Children’s shoes and flowers are shown after being placed outside the Ontario legislature in Toronto on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Ontario commits $10 million to investigate burial sites at residential schools

Truth and Reconciliation Commission identified 12 locations of unmarked burial sites in Ontario

Singer-songwriter Jann Arden is pictured with a draft horse. (Canadian Horse Defence Coalition)
Jann Arden backs petition to stop ‘appalling’ live horse export, slaughter

June 14 is the International Day to End Live Export of Animals

Two hundred and fifteen lights are placed on the lawn outside the Residential School in Kamloops, B.C., Saturday, June, 13, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former Kamloops Indian Residential School earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Days after Kamloops remains discovery, Tk’emlups families gather to unite, move ahead

‘We have to work together because this is going to be setting a precedent for the rest of the country’

In this Saturday, May 29, 2021, file photo, people crowd the Santa Monica Pier in Santa Monica, Calif. California, the first state in America to put in place a coronavirus lockdown, is now turning a page on the pandemic. Most of California’s coronavirus restrictions will disappear Tuesday, June 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
With COVID tamed, it’s a ‘grand reopening’ in California

No more state rules on social distancing, no more limits on capacity, no more mandatory masks

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Most Read