Phoenix Metro Lions Club
GAINEY RANCH GOLF CLUB
7600 Gainey Club Drive • Scottsdale, Arizona
Friday, May 18, 2012
EVAN’S STORY TOLD BY HIS DAD
It all started when Evan was about 13. He was playing baseball and he told me he couldn't see the ball when it came over the plate. He swung at it when it was far above his head but he thought it was chest high. So I suspected something was wrong, and took him to his pediatrician. He referred us to a specialist. Evan was diagnosed with KERATOCONUS. We were told that Even may eventually lose his eyesight. We tried to find someone to treat him but no one would accept our Access (Medicaid) plan. We were told that he needed special contacts and that they were very expensive, He could not wear soft ones or glasses, they must be hard. The only doctor in the valley that treats this condition wanted $250 up front in cash and the special contacts would be around $1500-1600 a set and as he grew he would need several pairs. We couldn’t afford the treatment at the time and didn’t know what to do. We told all our relatives and a few weeks later my sis- ter found a doctor in Beverly Hills, California. He agreed to see and treat Evan if our whole family would be participants in his research study. We agreed and all went fine for a few years .Evan got the special contacts and he was able to see about 20/25. A few years went by and during one of Evan’s regular yearly check-ups the doctor showed us an experimental procedure to prevent the eye shape from chang- ing and the cornea from degenerating resulting in Evan losing more eyesight. He told us that he was waiting for the FDA to approve this procedure on minors as Evan wasn't 18 yet. We waited for over a year and no approval,. At the next checkup the doctor called us after we had left office and told us Evan’s eye shape was changing and he wasn’t seeing as well.. The procedure was cost over 8,000 dollars was not covered under any insurance. I submitted some paperwork from doctor’s office telling the insurance that he needed this medically nec- essary procedure. They denied it. My mother, (Evan’s grandmother) decided to call Channel 12 news "Be a Hero" program and thru the story you saw and his follow-up visits, we have had a big success. An eye surgeon in Scottsdale (Dr. Jay SCHWARTZ) saw the story and called us and asked how he could help. We saw Dr. Schwartz and he did the surgery. Then we received a call from the LIONS CLUB. They wanted to meet Evan and worked with me (dad) and the doctor to cover the surgery expense. Evan still needs another surgery after he turns 18 (an intraoccular lense placement). We were told when the story was filmed to open an acct for donations for Evan’s surgery costs- which is still open for more donations...The next surgery will cost $6,000. At this time Evan is doing well and still wants to study Japanese and become a computer science engineer. He plays golf and works. He loves his job at FLO's ASIAN KITCHEN--Scottsdale Promenade shopping center. And now he can at least see the ball when he plays golf.
Why We are Lions! Help us continue to provide sight and hearing to those in need. A portion of the tournament proceeds will be designated for Evan’s next surgery.