Readers: Here are four of the winners of the free $1,600 hearing aids given out by Lively (listenlively.com), a company that I challenged to prove its claim that its devices were fabulous at a lower price than its competitors’.
Anyone who has been following this knows that the “Dear John” column convinced the New York City hearing aid company to give away three of its devices to people who needed them, but couldn’t afford to pay.
Then a kind reader, who was honoring her late hearing-impaired grandmother, bought another two pairs to donate. Lively then added two more pairs to match the reader’s gift, making it a total of seven sets of hearing aids in the big “Dear John” hearing aid giveaway.
The winners were selected randomly by Lively from people who emailed me and asked to be considered. Here are the stories of four of the winners. You’ll meet the other three next week.
From reader P.T.: I woke up this morning and read your article about Lively’s offer.
These would be a blessing for me. I have needed hearing aids for a few years now, but have not been able to part with the money to get them. I am 42 years old and a father of five. I have been the only source of income for my family since May 2009, when my wife went out on maternity leave for the birth of our daughter.
We had Sophie that year, and two more children after that, so my wife stayed out of work. Following the birth of our last child in August 2012, my wife planned to go back to work but developed fibromyalgia. The pain from this has kept her out of work and given us high medical bills in turn.
I noticed I may need aids a few years ago when I kept asking my wife and others to repeat what they had said. It frustrates me that I cannot catch what is being said to me the first time.
This is hindering me somewhat at my job now. I work in sales, coaching representatives about our products and listening to their conversations to point out ways to make them better. I have had to resort to trying out “hearing enhancement” apps on my phone.
These help a little but the sound quality is usually horrible. I am afraid that if I cannot do my job effectively, I may be asked to step down.
From reader J.T.: My husband Tommy is 81 years old and I am 73. We’ve been married 54 years.
His hearing is failing and the price of hearing aids has prevented us from getting him this much-needed help.
Medicare does not cover this at all. My husband and I have worked since we were teenagers and have never asked for something without paying. But this expense is too much for us.
We would appreciate it if Lively would help us by choosing my husband for a free hearing aid. It would make his life, and mine, so much better.
Thank you for considering us.
From reader T.S.: Just saw about the free hearing aids. I’m a mother and grandma and live on Social Security disability.
I’m will be 48 in a few weeks. I have been trying everything to get hearing aids. I can’t afford them and just don’t have good enough credit.
After getting sick and losing my job, I have pretty much lost everything. I have eight grandbabies, and it’s very hard to hear them when they talk to me. I’m constantly asking them to repeat what they are saying, or their moms have to tell me what they are saying.
I’m alone at home almost constantly, and my biggest fear is someone breaking in and me not hearing them.
I know you are probably getting a million emails. However I sure hope mine catches your eye!
Thank you for the opportunity to try to win these. They would really be life-changing for me! Oh, what a beautiful sound it would be to hear my grandbabies, and how great it would be to feel safe in my home alone.
From reader J.K.: There is no way I can come up with enough money to buy a set of your hearing aids. I’ve had the same pair for well over eight years. My health care plan won’t pay for anything involving an audiologist or devices.
I do like the sound of your product, and I would love to have a set. Heck, I’ve started a GoFundMe campaign with the hopes of getting enough money together to pay for a set. Over the past three months I’ve raised nine bucks.
I make decent money at my job. So it pains me to even ask for help. I just have a large household to feed and I can’t really afford this stuff for myself.
I have a disabled wife and six kids with various medical conditions that require constant care, so I’m lucky to have cash for the occasional soda I get myself while working during the day.
I just can’t pull money away from my family’s needs. So I’ll just keep working with my old ones till they finally bust and I’m forced to get a new set or lose my ability to use my commercial driver’s license to keep working.
Thanks for listening to my rant. You guys rock, and God bless.