Diagnosed with retinal cancer at the age of two, American Ben Underwood had his eyes removed at the age of three.
He discovered echolocation at the age of five. He was able to detect the location of objects by making frequent clicking noises with his tongue. This case was explained in 20/20:medical mysteries. He used it to accomplish such feats as running, basketball, rollerblading, playing foosball, and skateboarding.
Though at first resistant to using a cane for mobility, seeing it as a "handi-capped" device, and considering himself "not handicapped at all", Daniel Kish demonstrated to Ben how he utilized his white cane combined with echolocation to further expand his mobility, though Ben never adopted this method.Ben died on January 19, 2009 at the age of 16. He died from the same cancer that took his sight.
Here's the interview with Ben's mother
Other individuals with echolocation:
- James Holman, who traveled around the world with the sound of a tapping cane
- Daniel Kish, who has taught other blind people to utilize echolocation
- Dr. Lawrence Scadden