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11-Y-O aspiring presidential guard going blind

BY TRACEY KHAN-DRAKES –  Meet 11-year-old Leon Bagot an aspiring Presidential Guard who is losing the little sight he has left due to a cataract in his eye, which causes clouding of the lens in the eye leading to a decrease in vision.

The teen resides at Courtland Road Corentyne Berbice with his mother and five siblings and attends Corentyne Comprehensive High, where he is said to be performing well with help from his classmates and teachers.

Pandit Suresh Sugrim of Humanitarian Mission New Jersey sits with siblings Devon and Leon Bagot who are losing their sights

Pandit Suresh Sugrim of Humanitarian Mission New Jersey sits with siblings Devon and Leon Bagot who are losing their sights

The family’s financial constraint is preventing Leon from seeking overseas medical attention with hopes of preserving his sight, which will allow him to realize his potential and live his dream of protecting one of Guyana’s future presidents.  “I want to protect the president,” Leon said.

He attends school regularly and walked me through a normal school day for him, “a girl who sits in front of me would take my book and copy the work…when there is test the teachers would read the questions to me and I would tell them the answer.”

When I visited the family at their home recently, I was even more saddened when I learned that only a month ago they lost their father to cancer and their mother was struggling to pay fees for the Caribbean Secondary Examination Certificate (CSEC) for two of the children which would afford them a better shot at life than she was given.

It doesn’t stop there, Leon has a 16-year-old sister, Devon Bagot, a student of Manchester Secondary School who is also losing the sight in one of her eyes. Despite this impairment her ambition was to become a lawyer, however, her dream faded after her father’s death and the family’s growing financial troubles.

“I can’t because I would have to go back to school and how my father dead I ain’t gon get the money to go back.” When asked if she would pursue law if she is provided with financial assistance, she smiled widely  and replied, yes.

Devon and her brother will sit CSEC in 2017 and this was made possible through help from the Humanitarian Mission of New Jersey which is being operated by Pandit Suresh Sugrim from its Babu John Port Mourant location.

Her wish is to, “see better and I want the same thing for my brother.” Devon who underwent surgery has (cleaned her eyes) three times while her brother had undergone four surgeries already.

The children’s mother, 41-year-old Cheryl Bagot became emotional as she recounted the possibility of her two kids going blind if they don’t receive the help needed.

She was advised to purchase a specific type of lens for Leon, however, she cannot afford it, but is working to obtain the cash to do so.

Suresh Sugrim who has been assisting the family is hopeful that he will receive help to take the siblings overseas for better treatment.

The siblings were born with the disease.

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© 2016 Capitol News Guyana

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