World War II vet receives hearing aids after daughter’s emotional letter

A Georgia daughter made an incredible gesture to her father right before Father's Day  in an effort he won't soon forget.

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Deborah Slaton Ball wrote a powerful and emotional letter to the Beltone Hearing Care Foundation to see if she could get her father approved for new hearing aids.

Her father Jesse Eugene Slaton, 93, of Tyrone, Georgia, is a World War II veteran.

Deborah wrote: 

“I am writing on behalf of my father, Jesse Eugene Slaton in support of his application to the Beltone Hearing Care Foundation for Hearing aids. Let me tell you a little bit about Daddy. Daddy will be 94 in June. He is a World War II veteran and served in the Army (European Theater) from 1943-1946. He is proud of his service to our country and, as you know, there are very few members of the “greatest generation” left. His wife passed away several years ago. He cared for her through her trials with Alzheimer’s and, with her passing he now lives alone.

He wants to maintain his independence for as long as he can, but his hearing impairment makes it difficult for him to communicate effectively with others. He cannot hear callers on the phone and understand what they are saying. He may hear a few words, but cannot hear enough of the words to follow what they are saying. As a result, people almost shout over the phone, which in turn, distorts the words even more. He also has difficulty hearing people face to face. I have begun to believe that he depends on lip reading to some extent to cover the fact that he is not hearing the whole conversation. When in doubt, he nods and says, “hmmmm,” which is neither yes or no. It is simply a way for him to pretend he heard what you said without him tell you that he didn’t hear it. Daddy has worn his current Beltone hearing aids for years, and is in desperate need of new ones. However, he lives on a fixed income and cannot afford the financial burden of new hearing aids. Since his insurance will not cover new hearing aids, he has tried to “make do” with his old hearing aids which have long ago been overtaken by new technology. I believe that his quality of life will greatly improve if he is able to hear more clearly and, as a result, communicate more effectively. He is very sharp mentally, very personable, and very witty. With new hearing aids, he would be able to continue to live independently and be able to conduct his business affairs for himself if he so desired. I hope you will give favorable consideration to Daddy. I am proud of his service to our country. I am proud of the man he is. And I am proud to call him Daddy.”

After reading the letter, the Beltone Hearing Care Foundation and Beltone Audiology & Hearing Aid Centers approved Jesse Eugene Slaton for near hearing aids.

Slaton received them on Friday June 9.

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