'Ultimate Irony': Inventor of Game Operation Can't Afford His Own Operation

John Spinello invented the wildly popular game Operation back in 1965. The game has made millions, but Spinello can’t afford to pay for his own operation. INSIDE EDITION explains.

It's the iconic board game where players remove funny objects from cavity Sam with small red tweezers.

Since it was invented way back in 1965, the electrifying game has grossed more than $40 million.

If you grew up in the past 50 years you probably played the classic board game “Operation.” Now, fans of the game are coming to the aid of its creator John Spinello, who in a strange twist of fate needs help paying for his own operation.

If you think the inventor of such a popular game would be living on easy street, think again.

Spinello spoke to INSIDE EDITION about his invention, the game “Operation.”

“I got a $500 check after begging for it,” he said.

You heard right, Spinello, now 77-years-old, was paid just $500 for his multi-million dollar idea and never received a dime in royalties.

Now retired, he needs $25,000 worth of dental work. His friends Tim Walsh and Peggy Brown have even gone on the website crowdrise.com to raise money.

In a video on the website Brown says, "You may not know John, but you certainly know the game he created."

So far, $15,000 in donations have come in, more than half of what Spinello needs for his own operation.

Spinello said, "It's beyond our wildest dreams."

Watch the Segment!