Crenshaw Says He’ll Be ‘Off the Grid’ for Several Weeks After Emergency Eye Surgery

By Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Writer
Janita Kan is a reporter based in New York covering the Justice Department, courts, and First Amendment.
April 11, 2021 Updated: April 11, 2021

Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) said that he underwent emergency eye surgery on April 9 and will be “off the grid” for the next few weeks as he recovers from the operation.

Crenshaw, a Navy veteran who lost his right eye and suffered damage to his left eye while serving in Afghanistan, said he underwent surgery for a detached retina in his left eye after he noticed some dark blurry spots in his vision earlier in the week.

His left eye was extensively damaged after an improvised explosive device (IED) exploded during his deployment in 2012. He said the blast caused a cataract, excessive tissue damage, and damage to his retina.

“This is a terrifying prognosis for someone with one eye, and the nature of the injuries that I sustained in Afghanistan. Anyone who knows the history of my injuries knows that I don’t have a ‘good eye,’ but half a good eye,” the Texas Republican said in a statement following the surgery at Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center in Houston. “The surgery went well, but I will be effectively blind for about a month.”

He said doctors placed a gas bubble in his eye, which acts as a bandage for his retina.

“This means I have to be face-down for the next week or so, unable to see anything,” he said.

Crenshaw’s offices will remain open, but the lawmaker won’t be active during his recovery.

Several of his colleagues have sent him well wishes.

Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-Texas) said in a statement: “Freedom isn’t free—it’s built on the sacrifice of our service men and women like my friend, Dan Crenshaw. Please join me in praying for his speedy and full recovery.”

Rep. Sylvia Garcia (D-Texas) said: “Wishing you a full and speedy recovery. Prayers to you, Tara and family. Let me know if I or my staff can assist in any way. God Bless.”

Crenshaw was reelected in November in Texas’s 2nd Congressional District.

Considered a rising star in the Republican Party, Crenshaw hadn’t held elected office before running in 2018. He served 10 years on the Navy SEAL teams and retired as a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy in 2016, according to his campaign biography.

Bowen Xiao contributed to this report.

Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Writer
Janita Kan is a reporter based in New York covering the Justice Department, courts, and First Amendment.