The North Jefferson News
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
By Melanie Patterson
A Morris man is doing his part to help veterans with hearing problems be better understood.
David Wright, who lost part of his hearing due to military injuries, knows how it feels to experience embarrassment and frustration as a result of having hearing impairment. He said others feel the same way.
Wright, a member of VFW Kelly Ingram Post 668 in Birmingham, had a simple idea: provide wrist bands to individuals so they can quickly and inconspicuously show to others that they are having a hard time hearing what is being said.
The VFW post has ordered sand-colored plastic wrist bands that state, “Hearing Impaired,” on them. Wright said VFW Post 668 Commander Henry Brown Jr. is fully supporting the program and approved spending the funds for it.
“The main purpose is for people to identify hearing impaired people in public,” Wright said. “We need to let people know we are hearing impaired, and they need to treat us respectfully. They need to help us at the level we need help.”
Wright said that going into public places can be a nightmare for people with hearing impairments.
“If you go into a noisy place, sometimes it’s actually better to turn your hearing aids off so you can just hear the sounds closest to you. Sometimes hearing aids frustrate a person because they transmit everything,” he said.
Wright said some hearing impaired people do not hear all frequencies, so they often catch only part of what is being said.
He added that he has lost friends because “people will drift away from you” if they are continually having to repeat themselves.