The Gift of a Lifetime
Chris Ward from Lynchburg, Virginia has been given the gift of a lifetime thanks to his mother, Marquita Hackley, and a pair of special-vision glasses called eSight. Hackley’s efforts raised $25,000 to give her son glasses that allow him to see. The 12-year-old was born blind and has relied on his other five senses to get to know his loved ones up until now.
He Can Now Perform Daily Tasks With Vision
Chris’ story was first introduced to the world back in April, when a video of him using the glasses for the first time surfaced. ABC aired a special on Chris and within minutes Hackley exceeded her goal of raising $15,000 for the glasses. Gone are the days that Ward has to do his homework on a braille typewriter. He can now wear the electronic glasses and perform daily tasks with vision; a gift most of us take for granted.
Hackley told Virginia’s WDBJ7 about surpassing her fundraising goal, “Most of them don't even know us and that's just -- it means a lot to me.”
Not only does Chris get the life-changing gift of vision, he’s also enjoying the benefits of 15 minutes of fame. “People are always telling me I want your autograph,” he said.
eSight Has Changed the Course of his Life Forever
Although the electronic glasses don’t work for all types of blindness, Hackley decided to try eSight for Chris. Chris was born with an optic nerve that never fully developed. He was only able to see the outline of shapes and colors by getting extremely close to what he was looking at, suffice to say eSight has changed the course of his life forever. The electronic glasses provide LED screens for Chris to see, which are operated by a high-speed camera that records live video.
Hackley told the Daily News in April, “As a mother going 12 years with your child not being able to clearly see — I don’t really have words for it.”
" . . . there you are"
Perhaps the most touching moment the mother and son shared throughout this experience are the first words Chris uttered upon trying on the eSight glasses for the first time; “Oh Mommy, there you are.”