AVON LAKE, Ohio (WJW) — A local mom who suffered from hearing loss received a very special gift on Friday. She got the gift after a local store heard about her struggle to communicate due to people wearing masks in the coronavirus pandemic.
“I used to always joke around that I’m partially deaf,” said April Straw, of Medina.
But it wasn’t a joke for Straw who has struggled to hear for years.
“It felt like I had cotton in my ear. I always felt pressure,” said Straw.
After her fiance lost his job due to the pandemic, this mother of two went back to work as a server at her family’s business, Steve’s Hot Dog Diner in Brooklyn.
“I rely on reading people’s lips. Seeing what they say instead of listening. With the masks, it was like, ‘Oh my God,” said Straw.
Enter in the Miracle-Ear store in Avon Lake.
“What she came in with is a mild to moderate hearing loss in both ears,” said Ross Burke, a hearing aid specialist.
On Friday, April was fitted for and received new hearing aids, free of charge. And, after she was able to hear clearly for the first time. Straw says she can’t wait to listen to her kids.
“My son and I constantly talk and now my daughter is learning how to talk. So, to be able to hear fully what she and he is saying is the best part,” said Straw.
With raising two kids and local restaurants suffering due to the pandemic, the price of hearing aids was too much for April. That’s when she found out about the Miracle-Ear Foundation, which gives free hearing aids to people without the financial means to buy them.
Her 10-year-old son Patrick and mother Rose also suffer from hearing loss and are being treated through Miracle-Ear.
Since its founding in 1990, the Miracle-Ear Foundation has donated more than 30,000 hearing aids to people nationwide. For more information on the organization and its services, call 866-205-9471.