Born Without Eyes

How a Watertown baby is seeing a bright future

Little Ava Jean Perillo is a happy Watertown baby who keeps mom very busy.

"She’s always going, always wanting to do something, always playing," says Kimberly Osborne.

Ava is a little different from other babies. Though she is healthy, Ava was born with anophthalmia, a rare congenital disease where the eyes don’t develop. Doctors noticed it when Ava was born.

"Everyone was like why isn’t she opening her eyes? The pediatrician came in, and they weren’t sure if her eyelids were fused shut or something. The pediatrician came in and said there’s no easy way for me to say this, but she’s blind, she doesn’t have any eyes," said Osborne.

So far Ava’s doctor's visits have been covered by insurance, but future surgeries may not be, and they can cost up to $70,000. That’s why the family is holding a fundraiser Saturday. They want to make sure they have enough funds to help Ava when she can have surgery at age ten.

"Best case scenario, hope that by the time she’s ten, technology has advanced to where they can do some sort of bionic eye so that she can see light and shapes. That would be the best case scenario, but realistically, I know she’ll get a prosthetic eye," said Osborne.

The dinner will be held Saturday from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the American Legion Post in Oakville. Tickets will be sold at the door for $5.

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