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December 4, 2002

Hearing is Believing

From: WAFF, AL - 04 Dec 2002

Dec. 4 - Imagine being unable to hear then, through a medical miracle, you're able to hear for the first time. That's what happened to two-year-old Haley Hargrove when she underwent Cochlear implant surgery.

It's been one year since Haley heard her first human voice. You wouldn't believe how much progress little Haley has made since her surgery last year. For three-year old Haley Hargrove, hearing is believing.

Speech Therapist Ellen Thomas drills Haley. “Haley, what's this? Eye. What's this? Nose. What's this? Mouth. What is this? Hair. Ears. That's right. I forgot your ears.”

It's hard to believe this playful little girl was born with severe hearing loss. After taking Haley to nearly a dozen doctors, her family decided on a new medical breakthrough called cochlear implants.

Haley’s mom, Sandy Hargrove, says the implants have made all the difference in her little girl's life. “I never know what’s going to come out of her mouth next. She learns a new word everyday. When she says I love you, that's really special.”

Once a week, Haley’s mom takes her to Huntsville for speech therapy. Ellen Thomas has been working with Haley for several months. With help from mom and dad, Haley is learning vital language and speech skills.

”She understands pretty. She understands dirty. She has a good vocabulary. She says I love you, night-night, bye.” Those little words are something Haley’s mom thought she would never hear.

Now one year later, Haley is enrolled in pre-school and enjoying the noisy world around her.

Sandy says, “I feel like we've opened her world up without it she would have been limited and I didn't want that. Hearing her talk being able to tell us what she wants, that's the best thing in the world to me.”

Depending on Haley’s progress, she should be ready to start kindergarten on time.

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