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Feb 16, 2010 9:51 AM by Associated Press

Roger Ebert cannot speak, but still communicates

Film critic Roger Ebert lost his ability to speak nearly four years ago, when he underwent a tracheostomy, a procedure that opens an airway through an incision in the windpipe,

after surgery for cancer in his jaw. For an interview in the new issue of Esquire magazine, the 67-year-old Chicago Sun-Times film critic uses pen and paper and text-to-speech computer software to communicate.

Ebert has been battling cancer since 2002, and has undergone a series of operations. When asked about the possibility of more surgery to restore his voice, Ebert shakes his head.

Besides his film reviews, Ebert writes a blog on the Internet and has published a number of books.

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