In August 2014, Danny went into hospital for major spinal surgery, With the procedure quite serious he was nervous about various complications but he never expected that he would leave not being able to see ever again. During the procedure Danny suffered with Ischaemic Optical Neuropathy which is caused due to starvation of blood flow to the Optic nerves.
The news was devastating for Danny, one minute he felt his life was perfect, the next he felt it was ruined, and after a traumatic appointment at Moorfields, they informed him that he would remain blind and there was no chance of him ever regaining his sight. He then tumbled into a world of depression, unsure how he would cope living without sight. For months Danny would just sit and listen to the TV and not speak to anyone. His wife Diane was left on the side-lines not knowing what to do and herself needing support from the shock.
Not sure as to what to do, Diane saw a leaflet for Support 4 Sight and contacted us without Danny’s knowledge, after some convincing Danny agreed to see us,
Our Community Support Worker went to meet Danny in September 2014, although angry and depressed Danny took on board all the information and guidance and he agreed to come to our resource centre in Saffron Walden. There Danny met our resource centre manager, Paul Atkins who himself has lost his sight. Danny was amazed at how capable he was despite his profound sight loss condition. It was time for Danny to accept his biggest challenge of what had happened to him, and accept it wasn’t just him it affected but his family too.
With the determination to do something he was referred to a rehabilitation worker and trained how to use a cane as well as receiving continued support from us with things such as home living aids and equipment that helped Danny keep his independence.
Danny believes that the strength of the charity is being available to people at that early stage at diagnosis when people are in the most shock, in the stretched NHS there is often little help from anyone else, had he had the early intervention he may of not put himself and family through the dark time he thought he was never going to get through. Thanks to Support 4 Sight his family also received the much needed help and support too and were helped to understand his feelings.
Danny wanted to help others and is now on the board of Trustee’s and is thoroughly enjoying his retirement. He recently celebrated his daughters wedding where through the confidence that Support 4 Sight gave him, he managed to achieve his dream of walking his daughter down the isle and giving her away.