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Sports Animal host Al Eschbach happy to have eyesight back

by Mel Bracht Published: June 26, 2009
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Eschbach said his eye problems began last June on a trip to Dubai. After returning to Oklahoma City, he underwent surgery to repair a detached retina in his right eye. In August, on a flight to Bangkok, the right eye problem flared up again, and he had to return home for emergency surgery.

Trouble on his left eye began in March when he was driving to Kansas City, Mo., for the NCAA basketball tournament. He said his latest surgery on his left eye, performed six weeks ago by Dr. Reagan Bradford at the Dean McGee Eye Institute, has gone well.

"I'm very positive — knock on wood — that if nothing else happens, I'll be able to do whatever I want to do."

Eschbach said all of his doctors have told him that pressure on his eyes from air travel should not affect his retinas. So he plans to keep flying to OU football games and overseas to exotic travel destinations.

He said he is planning a three-week trip in late July, possibly to Bali or Costa Rica.

"I'm going to live my life right now," he said. "I've got to do the things I've got to do."

by Mel Bracht
Copy Editor, Sports Media
Mel Bracht is a copy editor on the presentation desk and also covers sports media. A 1978 graduate of Indiana University, Bracht has been a print journalist for 34 years. He started his career as sports editor of the Rensselaer (Ind.) Republican...
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Al Eschbach rates his top five travel destinations:

Tahiti. It's so beautiful, it makes Hawaii look like Detroit.

Bali (Indonesia). I've always had a fascination with it from the movies. It's just another beautiful place that has incredible fruit.

Phuket (Thailand). It's just incredibly beautiful. Best seafood I've had in my life at a really good price.

Costa Rica. Been going there for years. Nice people and also beautiful.

Munich. Best beer in the world. That's where I first had beer with radishes.

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