SALEM, Va. – At the Roanoke Valley Center for Sight, Warren Cable is getting ready for a special surgery. He is one of 14 patients without health insurance who will receive free eye cataract surgeries as part of the 11th annual Gift of Sight Day.
"Maybe five years ago, my eyes started getting blurry and the last two years, they just got tremendously worse," said Warren.
Warren says he used to love drawing. He had no issues crossing the street or holding down a steady job. But his eye problems changed that. Friday is his shot at a new way of life. The operating room is quiet but hopeful as Dr. Karli Griffeth handles the life-changing procedure. The medical professionals at the Center for Sight, including Griffeth, volunteer their time for the special day.
"It's just a fun day because everyone is here because they want to be here and because it's so important to the patients," said Griffeth.
With every push of the pedal and move of the tool, Warren is one step closer to seeing again. And then it happens -- Warren is seeing colors again. After he's wheeled out to the recovery room, he sees his dad's face clearly for the first time in years. He's having little victories, moments many people take for granted.
"I'm reading that thing from here. I wouldn't be able to see that thing if it was right here before I came in here earlier," said Warren.
So how does it feel to get the gift of sight back?
"For a second there, I didn't have anything going through my head but 'Wow, that was it just wow,'" said Warren.
He's feeling a little bit of shock but mostly gratitude for the perfect Christmas gift.
"Say thank you to all of them, go back and get a job, and maybe I can send them Christmas gifts next year," said Warren.
If you have questions about Gift of Sight Day or the Center for Sight, you can reach them by phone: 540-378-5276.