Long Island DJ doesn't let visual impairment hold him back

<p>For 19-year-old Jumair Rhodes, also known as DJ Nyree, sight and sound are crucial to his craft.</p>

News 12 Staff

Sep 1, 2018, 11:00 PM

Updated 2,098 days ago


For 19-year-old Jumair Rhodes, also known as DJ Nyree, sight and sound are crucial to his craft.
The Nassau Community College student suffers from retinoschisis, an eye disease that causes his retinas to split. It's a condition that could result in total blindness.
He was diagnosed about a year ago after his eyesight had become blurry and dark, but retinoschisis often has no warning signs at all.  
"As I was sitting in the doctor's office, I kept overhearing we have to get him to surgery immediately so, something I thought that at first was something mild then it became something serious," he recalls.
His mother, Tamika Eason, says she feared the worst.
"I will never forget that when we did receive the diagnosis from the ophthalmologist, once we got there after giving it to me she said, 'I'm sorry.' And when she said, 'I'm sorry,' I knew we had a big problem," Eason says.
Jumari was rushed to surgery to try to restore his vision in one of his eyes and repair the other. Recovery was long and grueling -- he had to be facedown for about 20 hours a day, he says.
But even days after surgery, Jumari had to get back to his turntables. Since then, some of his vision has been restored, but he and his mother tell me that his prognosis is uncertain. And the possibility of losing his vision is something Jumari tells me he's planned for.
"Tempo and beats. As long as I can hear the claps and the bass notes, I'll be able to navigate my way," he says.
Eason tells me she's proud that her son is determined to cultivate his DJ business in the wake of his diagnosis. And Jumari encourages people to pursue their aspirations despite the challenges put in their path.
"Whatever you want to do in life, you'll be able to do it as long as you put the hard work in you have to be dedicated and really want to do it," he says.
To contact Jumari “DJ Nyree” Rhodes, email: deejaynyree@gmail.com

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