J Lawton Smith Award Recipient

J Lawton Smith was one of the original founders of the COS.  He was globally well known as a neuroophthalmologist who was charismatic in practice and his faith!

The J Lawton Smith Award is given out each year at the COS Annual Meeting to an ophthalmologist who has shown a lifetime commmitment to serving the Lord through their personal practice of excellence in medicine, academic influence, and/or missionary dedication.


Dr. C. Roger DeHaven Tributes




Award Year:

September 24, 1932 – October 17, 2019

After bravely struggling for years with Alzheimer’s disease, Dr. C. Roger DeHaven went to be with his Lord. He was 87. As the 2005 J Lawton Smith Award Recipient, we would like to remember Dr. DeHaven and the work that he did. His faithful walk with Jesus and his efforts to give both physical and spiritual light to others is an inspiration.

Dr. DeHaven was from Tyler, TX. He set up his private ophthalmology practice in Tyler shortly after moving there in 1964. Over the course of his career, he did over 23,000 cataract operations and was the first surgeon in East Texas to design and build a Medicare approved ambulatory surgical center. His involvement in the Lighthouse for Christ Eye Centre Mission in Kenya, East Africa was one of things he most treasured. He loved the Lighthouse and often said that was the reason he was put on this earth. He is responsible for the design and construction of their new Eye Center and building expansion that sits on the 2-acre Mombasa, Kenya, campus today.

He is survived by his wife Lou Anne whom he married on December 27, 1953. They enjoyed a long and happy marriage and were able to stay together throughout the progression of his disease, thanks to her tireless efforts. They had 5 children including son Thomas DeHaven who still practices in Tyler at the DeHaven Eye Center. 

Comments on the Lighthouse for Christ Facebook page:

“A true hero of faith and selfless servant of the most high was entered his rest!”

“It was a privilege to serve alongside him at Lighthouse for Christ Eye Centre.”

“A great friend and man of God.”





JLS Award Recipients

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