Andrew Airey married his wife almost 15 years ago, but recently he had a second wedding and this time he could see more of her face and even her wedding veil.
Airey lives with Stargardt’s disease, a form of macular degeneration, and his eyesight has deteriorated over the past 20 years. He’s legally blind, which has made life with his wife, Kelli, and their three daughters challenging in some ways. He said one of the biggest challenges is “not being able to see my wife’s facial expressions.” But a new device has changed that.
A pair of eSight 3 smart glasses have given Airey something close to 20/20 vision. Recently Airey and his family were able to recreate their wedding while he wore the device. The wedding was at the same church from 15 years ago and the ceremony included the same cake and many of the same guests.
The wedding film shows how emotional restoring Airey’s vision was for him and his family. Like he said, living with Stargardt’s disease has made little things more difficult — there are many things that we take for granted, like seeing our partner’s eyebrows.
“From struggling to see my loved ones’ faces to being unable to drive or work to not being able to simply read without multiple magnification devices, my vision has challenged me in ways I did not expect when I was first diagnosed with Stargardt’s disease,” he said.
The glasses, which look like a VR headset, have an HD camera and two sensors up front and inside have two screens and prisms, a processor and a small battery pack. When Airey wore them at his second wedding he was seeing images from the camera and sensor that were displayed on the small screens in front of his eyes. The video shows what the wedding day looked like from Airey’s glasses.
This isn’t just a feel-good story, the glasses give Airey back what he calls “details of the day.” He describes the importance of the glasses and how life-changing they were when he first tried them last November. He wrote more about the importance of the glasses on an online crowdfunding page his family created earlier this year.
He probably can see us tearing up watching this.