Rose Baca suffered from Keratoconus, a painful disease that deformed her eyes into the shape of a cone. If she did not have surgery she would not have been able to continue her job as a 911 operator or drive a car. She would have had to depend on others to help her run simple errands.
"Before the transplant I couldn't read. I had to hold any reading material in front of my eyes. My corneas kept tearing. It was like sandpaper scraping my eyes," Rose said. "My doctor suggested that I have a cornea transplant. The first eye was done December 3, 1989 and the second on March 6, 1990."
Rose told Joline Gutierrez Kruger, a writer for the Albuquerque Journal, that her transplanted corneas came from male donors. Because of these donors, Rose still has her sight.