Seeing vivid color of reds and blues is one of those magical little mysteries we all take for granted daily. Most of us learned in grade school how the human eye and the brain work in tandem transforming light into color through light receptors within the eye.
However, what if you’re one of the roughly 300 million people worldwide suffering from color blindness, a debilitating condition affecting mostly males?
That’s how 12-year old Jonathan Jones of Cottonwood, Minnesota, has lived his entire life, in a world of gray hues. He was unable to fully see vibrant colors, especially red, green or blue.
The young lad from Cottonwood, Minnesota had often dreamed of being able to see bright colors, hoping some day that advances in technology would give him an opportunity to experience the wonders of color.
Luckily, Jonathan didn’t need to wonder very long. As it turned out, Jonathan’s principal, Scott Hanson is also color blind and had a special surprise for Jonathan; a pair of special eye glasses that would allow Jonathan to see color for the first time in his young life.
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Hanson had received the expensive glasses as a gift from his family and decided to let Jonathan try them on during his 7th-grade science class at Lakeview School in Minnesota.
That emotional and heartwarming moment was captured on video and posted on social media by Jonathan’s older brother Ben. He recorded the moment the 7th grader was handed the special glasses by Principal Hanson during a lesson plan in class about color blindness.
As soon as Jonathan put on the glasses and was able to see the full spectrum of colors in the world, he began to cry. Hanson, realizing the emotional impact of the moment, quickly comforted him with a hug and whispered, “I’m so happy for you.”
Jonathan was overwhelmed at seeing the different shades of color. He went over to the periodic table hanging on the wall and marveled at the many shades of pink, purple, blue, yellow, orange, gray, and green. Hanson said that when he put the glasses on for the first time, he too wanted to “touch every color.”
The heartwarming video instantly went viral with more than 27,000 hits in just a few days. The video concludes with Hanson telling Jonathan that he can keep the special glasses overnight saying to the youngster that “If you can laugh and cry in the same day that is the greatest day ever.”
Jonathan’s mother, Carole Walter Jones, witnessing her sons transformation decided to set up a GoFundMe page hoping to raise the $350 needed to buy Jonathan his own pair of color blind glasses.
At the time (2004), the family raised more than $30,000, prompting Jonathan’s mother to acknowledge the generosity of people stating; “I’m overwhelmed by how many kind, generous people have wanted to help him get a pair of his own color blind glasses,” adding that they would be using “100% of donated funds to purchase color blind glasses for those who can’t afford them.”
When EnChroma Eyewear, the California Company that makes the special glasses heard about the money raised to help others like Jonathan they decided to match the donation, which would provide an additional 130 pairs of glasses.