Jack Morris is an inspiration to his parents

4:19 PM, Apr 3, 2013   |    comments
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By Heidi Glaus

ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - Jack Morris puts his boots on like the rest of us. Plays guitar better than most of us, but he doesn't see things quite as well as the majority of us.

"He's blind at night," explained Jack's mom Leslie Morris.

It's something his parents noticed at an early age.

"Being our first child we didn't have a lot to compare it to so we kind of coddled him a little, but we did notice difficulty on stairs," Leslie said.

After a series of tests he was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa.

"It is the number one cause of blindness in children. So in terms of blinding diseases it is the most common at that age," Jason, Jack's dad pointed out.

It was at that point when Leslie and Jason Morris got a valuable piece of advice.

"To not let the disease define him and to let him be at the time a five year old kid," Leslie said.

Now of course he's a 10-year-old with a pretty packed calendar.

"Football, I'm doing swim team this year and basketball," Jack said.

He doesn't have a girlfriend, but he does have a rather witty reply.

"Well, Heidi I like to keep my options open," he said.

Options are also what his parents continue to fight for and since Jack's diagnosis, they have been working with the Foundation Fighting Blindness to raise awareness and funds for research and education.

"Truly every dollar we raised and every day that goes by we are getting closer to a cure and there is a lot of reason for optimism that there will be a day in the not so distant future that these things will not impact the lives of people to the extent that they have," Jason added.

So the athletes on his bedroom walls might be the men Jack admires, but it's Jack who is parents admire most.

"The courage he shows us gives us the strength to go on," Leslie said.

And his parents who are setting a great example for the rest of us.


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