Paralyzed Artist Draws on Spirit to Paint - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Paralyzed Artist Draws on Spirit to Paint

Peggy Chun Peggy Chun
Kimi Chun Kimi Chun

By Mari-Ela David

ALA MOANA (KHNL) - A woman paralyzed from head to toe, has tugged Hawaii's heartstrings once again. Even in the face of death, her life as an artist is still flourishing.

Peggy Chun made a special appearance Monday at Barnes and Noble in Ala Moana Shopping Center for the premiere of a children's book she co-wrote - an incredible accomplishment considering she's lost the use of her limbs and can no longer speak.

The project is a reflection of a motto she lives by - you don't paint with your hands, you paint with your heart.

Doctors say Peggy is inching toward death. But loved ones say she is more alive today than ever.

"So many people describe her as unstoppable and it's so true. People often ask us, 'How's Peggy doing?' It's like we're just trying to keep up with her, so she's incredibly creative," says her daughter-in-law, Kimi Chun.

After years of delighting fans with her artwork, her latest creative flare is showcased in "The Watercolor Cat", a children's book she co-authored despite her battle with Lou Gehrig's disease.

"Today is extremely exciting. Shelly Mecum and Peggy have been working on this a long time so it's really a dream come true," says Kimi.

The book tells Peggy's life story through the viewpoint of her beloved cat, "Boo".

Pictures include watercolor paintings Peggy created even as her muscles began to deteriorate, some drawn with only one hand, then just her nose, and later, with only her eyes - digitally through a special computer. In the back of the book, a personal message:

"I'm here to tell you how afraid I've always been, that overcoming fear is the only way to grow," Peggy wrote.

In her spiritual growth, Peggy is living proof, you can paint without hands,

tell a story without words and touch the hearts of others without moving a finger.

The book isn't the last of Peggy's projects. She can no longer physically paint, but since she can still communicate with her eyes using a spell board, Peggy is now in the business of directing various art projects.

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