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Community Helps Fund Young Man’s Eye Surgery

sam clark art by Monique Cassells

Sam-Clark-inspired art by Monique Cassells of Redding.

Sam Clark is a 29-year-old north state resident who works as the produce manager for Holiday Market in Palo Cedro. He’s engaged to be married – “to the most beautiful woman in the world,” and has pets, as he describes them – “three rescue fur children”.

His philosophy is to embrace life with a heart full of love, and to give of himself as often as he can.

“I normally don’t ask for any help,” he said. “I try to help others as much as I can.”

This time, he’s the one in need of help.

When Sam was in high school he was shot in the left eye with a 22-caliber pellet rifle. The pellet embedded itself in Sam’s eye socket and could not be removed.

His eye was rendered blind with a detached retina, severed optic nerve and displaced pupil.

When the accident happened lawsuits were attempted to recover insurance money for surgery costs, but the lawsuits were unsuccessful.

Sam has had two eye surgeries to try and salvage his vision, but his doctors say his left eye will always be blind. Sam’s come to terms with that.

But now, that eye is dying. It has glazed over with calcium crystals which constantly scrape the eyelids. When that happens light enters the eye and bounces in the wrong angles due to the detached retina and displaced pupil. This causes severe pain and most days Sam cannot go without wearing a patch or very dark sunglasses. Sam says the pain feels as if someone is trying to pry out his eye with a spoon.

Sam says that his doctors have told him that although it’s rare, it’s possible that eventually his immune system could recognize his damaged eye as normal, and attack the vision in the good eye as a result, putting him at risk for total blindness.

Sam needs surgery for an artificial left eye, but his insurance won’t cover the cost of approximately $10,000. His family suggested he create online funding sources to help with the costs. And that’s what he’s done. He says any donation is greatly appreciated.

sam clark

To help pay for Sam Clark’s eye surgery, click on this GoFund site

Or click here for an INDIEGOGO page that offers perks from Redding artist Monique Cassells, who offers copies of her downloadable digital art prints as a token of appreciation for those who contribute to Sam Clark’s fund.

Click here for the KRCR story about Sam Clark.

Doni Chamberlain

Independent online journalist Doni Chamberlain founded what’s now known as anewscafe.com in 2007 with her son, Joe Domke. Chamberlain is an award-winning newspaper opinion columnist, feature and food writer recognized by the Associated Press, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and E.W. Scripps. She lives in Redding, California.

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