It is rare to find a product that so perfectly and completely solves a problem. Last Wednesday, SKC account executive Victor Cuellar and I were given the opportunity to showcase the VGo video robot at the Texas State Capitol and discuss how it has turned life around for one child. I’ve heard this story a hundred times by now and I’m still taken by how perfectly things fell into place. Unfortunately, this story begins with a grave illness affecting a child with a giant personality.
Lyndon Baty is a 15-year old high school freshman whose body is rejecting a kidney transplant seven years after the surgery. His immune system has been depressed by doctors since December of last year to prolong the life of his donated kidney. As a result, he’s unable to join the outside world, much less go to school. To make that harsh reality even more difficult on Lyndon, he’s a very social kid with a big warm personality. When I met Lyndon and his family, I could tell that he was the life of the party. When Victor, collaboration engineer Paul Lively, and regional manager Scott Grimm conducted a demonstration of VGo’s first generation video robot at ESC Region IX in Wichita Falls, Texas, it was clear that this would give Lyndon the access to friends and teachers he needed.
His mom and dad told us repeatedly that before Lyndon could use VGo, his attitude was bleak. It was a struggle to get out of bed, eat and take medication. For Lyndon, he was missing out on the life his brothers and friends were all enjoying at school. The transformation was overnight; he’s up early, he’s been taking medication and eating much better. All around, this has been a real boost for Lyndon’s recovery and ongoing treatment.
Since then, Lyndon’s been on a wild ride. Local news ran a story that catapulted to NBC’s Today Show, then a Japanese news crew flew out to Dallas then drove to Knox City, Texas just to get a look at what VGo was doing for this young man… go ahead and google that drive. Last week, Lyndon and his family were invited to visit the Texas State Capitol and demonstrate what the video robot was capable of to his Senator, Robert Duncan on the Senate floor and to Governor Rick Perry, in the Governor’s office. Victor and I were there to support the demonstration and answer any questions that came up.
Hanging out on the floor of the Senate was pretty cool, I have to say. Of course the Senator and Governor were gracious hosts to us and the Baty family. At one point, during the photo-op in Governor Rick Perry’s office, Victor and I were talking with him and I needed to get the VGo onto the network before it could drive anywhere. I asked him, “Could you give me three minutes?” Governor Perry jumped back to the family, taking the cameras with him, so I could hurry up and get VGo online. After that, Lyndon was able to drive it behind the Governor back into his office area, where the Senator and Governor spent over half an hour entertaining the family and showing the kids all the crazy stuff Governor Perry had in his office.
Here’s Governor Perry sending a tweet about Lyndon, with some help from the man of the hour himself.
You can also check out the local news story here.