Dave Huddleston reports…
IVYLAND, Pa. (CBS) — You might expect kids with blindness to need help, but Dave Huddleston met two youngsters who are helping themselves and others.
The Smedley house in Ivyland, Bucks County is an active place. Michael, 11, Mitchell, 8, and Karissa, 7, keep mom Kristin busy. She and her husband also have to keep a watchful eye on the two boys. They’re legally blind.
“We’re told with Michael that he has about five feet of usable vision,” said Kristin. “Mitchell doesn’t really have anything in the center. His is all on the peripheral, so he’ll pull stuff up to the corner of his eye to see it.”
Both boys have leber congenital amaurosis or LCA, a genetic condition where the retina deteriorates. The Smedleys didn’t know anything about LCA until Michael was born.
“We noticed when he was about three months old, when we would lay him down on the floor, his eyes would kind of disappear down into his cheeks,” said Kristin.
After learning all they could, they marched forward, exposing their children to any and everything. The boys play organized sports like football and baseball, and of course, there’s music lessons.
“We’re not ones to sit and pity at all,” said Kristin. “That doesn’t really get you anywhere.”
They are a family of action, so they organized a kids’ event called Bike the Basin. Mitchell tells me the money from gift baskets, bracelets and donations will be used to fund blindness research.
“I think it’s gonna be awesome,” said Mitchell.
Michael says, with the help of good friends, they’ve worked hard on the fundraiser. Now they want you to come out and support it.
“All this hard work is finally going to pay off,” said Michael.
Bike the Basin
Sunday, September 18, 9 a.m. until noon
The Northampton Civic Center Basin, 345 Newtown-Richboro Road
Registration fee: $10.00 per child
Reported by Dave Huddleston, CBS 3