Larry Hester, 66, has been blind for half his life from a condition called retinitis pigmentosa.
In September, 2014, an electronic stimulator was surgically implanted in his left eye.
On October 1st, 2014 Duke eye surgeon Dr. Paul Hahn turned it on for the first time. While the device does not restore vision in the normal sense, it provides light-and-darkness differentiation.
"It was incredible, it was bright, and it was significant," Hester says of the experience in the video. "And I, I just had to take a deep breath ... It was hard to articulate what I was feeling, but I wanted to share it with everybody I could grab at the time."
He's the 7th person in the United States to receive the visual aid since the device, known as the Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System, was approved by the FDA.
Duke is only the fourth center in the country to implant the device since approval.