Starlight Virtual Reality Gives Comfort and Distraction to Damon

Meet Damon

Damon was enjoying what he normally does as a 15-year-old teenager – going to school, skateboarding, and gaming with friends. 

Fast forward four weeks later and suddenly Damon is in the hospital, painfully enduring a bilateral lung collapse and a blood transfusion resulting from suffering pneumonia. Both were caused by an excruciating sickle cell episode – Damon’s first one in eight years. 

Unexpected episodes of extreme pain are a common symptom for sickle cell patients. Damon's mom Liz shares how one of the most challenging parts of sickle cell disease is how suddenly their world can change.

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Physical pain, anxiety and stress is disorienting, but Starlight Virtual Reality gives Damon comfort and calm in a time when he needs it most. The VR experiences and interactive games help him distract from and manage his pain. For kids like Damon, Starlight Virtual Reality is a constant companion that helps them relax and feel peace. 

Liz, Damon’s mom, talks about the noticeable difference she saw in Damon after he uses the Starlight Virtual Reality headset:

"Positive changes I notice in Damon once he uses VR is that it brings a since of calmness and also has a significant impact in education and self-confidence. For me I feel it's a safe, controlled environment for my son Damon and most importantly he enjoys it and keeps him alive and calm." - Liz, Damon’s mom

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Since Damon’s most recent sickle cell episode, he has returned home after almost two weeks of hospitalization. He is now recovering and adjusting back to his regular routine – going to school, skateboarding, and hanging out with friends.  

But not every child with a serious illness can enjoy the comfort of home. Hundreds of children must stay in the hospital all year long, battling stress and anxiety. Happiness from a Starlight program can give children the calm and comfort they need to persevere.  

Consider donating to fund a Starlight program today. Your generosity will transform a hospitalized kid’s hospital stay, providing happiness when they need it most.

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