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Benefit planned for Ron Long

FPS staff report

Ron Long  benefitA Rigatoni Benefit Dinner is planned April 6 from 3-7 p.m. for Ron Long of Leavittsville.

The dinner will be held, along with a bake sale, silent auction and 50/50 drawing, at Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church hall in Carrollton.  Cost is by donation and proceeds will go toward medical expenses and helping make his home safe for him to move around so he can be as independent as possible.

Long, 57, is legally blind and was diagnosed with acute ischemic optic neuropathy in December 2012.  Long suffered a stroke two years ago and lost vision in his right eye.  He awoke one morning, turned the television on and had a blind spot in the right side of his eye and was unable to read the scrolling ticker feed along the bottom of the screen.

He went to the hospital and was referred to an Optometrist who said he was experiencing the same problem in the left eye as the right eye.  His wife and sisters took him to Cleveland Clinic for a second opinion and he was diagnosed.  He was prescribed medication to make the swelling in the eye go down with the hopes once the swelling was alleviated, his sight may return.

Within three weeks, Long was rendered completely blind except for being able to see light and shadow out of the bottom left corner of his right eye. 

“I never thought I would go blind in a million years,” said Long.  “I can’t do any work or watch TV and once the sun goes down even with the lights on, it is dark.”

Long was always active taking care of his two miniature ponies, a donkey and his dog, but is no longer able to care for them by himself.  He had also worked at Wendell Ford and Kohmann Motors (now Loudon Ford) and most recently as a die maker and maintenance man.

Long lives with his wife, Kathie, and stays with one of his eight sisters and three brothers when she is working.  He has a daughter, Amanda Bocciarelli and two grandchildren, Grayson, 2 1/2, and Addison, 1 1/2. 

Anyone wishing to donate an item for a silent auction or food for the dinner can call Barb Hilton at 330-354-7560.  Monetary donations can also be mailed to Barb Hilton, 1246 Carnegie Ave., Akron, OH 44314.

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