On Your Side: New eye helps Richmond woman get new job - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

On Your Side: New eye helps Richmond woman get new job

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

A Richmond woman who called 12 for help getting an artificial eye recently landed a job and she's thanking the ocularists who stepped up, to help us help her.

Iris Reilly-Moore had the skills to work but not the look or confidence. She came to NBC12 crying over her missing eye back in March.

She was eager to work but felt no one would hire her because of how she looked. All that's changed now. 

Iris is back working at Martin's grocery store deli. We caught up with her on her day off. We talked about how she's living life with renewed confidence and how her husband is now paying it forward after such kindness was shown to his wife.

Iris has a job and she's a tax paying citizen again. The woman who used to turn away to avoid looks from inquisitive strangers now converses with people eye to eye. "I missed it so much. When I'm in the deli cutting meat, I can look at a person and not be self conscious of how I looked," she said. "I feel better about myself overall. The eye makes a whole lot of difference."

Iris' diseased right eye was amputated through VCU Medical Center's indigent care fund, but she had to get her own prosthesis. An artificial eye costs $3,000. Companies she contacted wanted cash or insurance and Iris had neither. "My family tells me it's OK, but to me it's not OK," she said.

For Michael Hughes, who devotes his talent to a non-religious mission that helped four thousand people in El Salvador, helping Iris was a natural response for both father and son who operate the Artificial Eye Clinic.

"I love them with all my heart," she said. The prosthetic eye Iris believes helped her get a job that restored herself esteem. Iris lost sight in one eye, but not the vision of a normal life. She rides her own moped now alongside her husband Myrle Moore, who decided he wanted to help others after strangers improved his wife's life.

Myrle reached out to NBC12 and became a Call 12 volunteer, answering our help line. "We were at the ocularist and it just came to me," he said. "It occurred to me that they did this. They were the ones who relayed the information." It's his way of saying thank you.

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