Lack Of Vision Doesn’t Stop Young Swimmer
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – When you get Jeffrey Cone in the water it’s hard to get him out.
“He loves it. Loves it!” said Diane Cone, his mother.
“It’s fun,” said Jeffrey.
A born swimmer, the first grader began taking lessons at sixteen months old. At about the age of two, he was swimming freestyle across the pool and he kind of shocked everybody.
You would never know by looking at him, but Jeffrey is legally blind. He was born with a rare genetic eye condition. He has no color vision whatsoever.
So things, many of us take for granted, are difficult for Jeffrey.
“If you’re just walking in the parking lot up on a curb, you’re going to potentially hit that; because your depth perception, when you have no color vision, is off,” said Diane.
Diane says her son can only see about 10 feet in front of him, and says it’s hard for Jeffrey, because he so badly wants to jump and climb like all the other boys his age.
But get him in the water and he’s just like everyone else on his Bear River Swim Team.
“It’s the one sport he can do where he’s comparable to a boy who has full vision,” said Diane.
In fact, Jeffrey’s coach, although he’s one of the youngest on the team, says he might have a shot to join 25 other teammates at this year’s Junior Olympics.
“Its amazing to me the things he’s been able to accomplish,” said Diane.
He’s already setting his sights high when he grows up. Jeffrey wants to be a professional swimmer. And his parents say Jeffrey’s focused enough to make that dream a reality.
“Everyone is just constantly inspired by him,” said Diane.