Newton K. Wesley, 93, an optometrist who suffered from keratoconus, died on July 21 from congestive heart failure. Wesley was told at a young age that his vision problems would eventually worsen and he would become blind. His vision was improved by large glass contact lenses, but they were too uncomfortable to wear for any period of time. He worked to develop smaller, plastic lenses, and today is often credited with having invented the first commercially successful rigid contact lens. He and his colleague, George Jessen, formed the Plastic Contact Lens Company in 1946, which changed its name to Wesley-Jessen Inc. Schering Plough bought it in 1980 and today it is owned by CIBA Vision. Wesley was also involved in education, running the North Pacific College of Optometry and serving on its board for many years, and teaching at the Monroe College of Optometry.

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