HLAA salutes America’s heroes who served to protect our freedom. Thank you for your service.

Do you have a hearing loss due to military service? A report from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs estimated that more than 59,000 military members are on disability for hearing loss from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.

HLAA was founded in 1979 by Howard “Rocky” Stone, a retired CIA agent, who endured hearing loss from his service in the United States Army. Rocky was well-known in the agency for both his skill and his hearing loss. On one occasion he was having a hard time “hearing” when talking with then-Director Richard Helms, so Rocky plopped himself on Helms’ desk and asked him to face him directly so he could read his lips! Another time, his old-fashioned body hearing aid was mistaken for a recording spy device and was confiscated. Rocky earned the Agency’s highest honor and went onto establish an organization for people who have hearing loss and want to stay in the hearing world with technology and strategies.

Complimentary HLAA Membership for Veterans

HLAA is honored to offer two types of membership for United States veterans (both include the other benefits of Individual membership):

  • Digital Membership – this complimentary membership includes our award-winning Hearing Life in digital format; or
  • Non-Digital Membership – Hearing Life, our bimonthly magazine, will be delivered right to your mail box; complimentary for one year, renewal at $35/year.

Our bimonthly magazine, Hearing Life, is a helpful resource on the latest in technology, medical issues, legislation, personal stories, and more. If you are a veteran and are interested in joining HLAA, please complete the Veteran Membership Form and mail it, fax it or email it in.

Complimentary HLAA Convention Registration

HLAA would like to show its support of veterans attending their first HLAA Convention by offering a complimentary registration (as well as for a caregiver). For more information about registering for HLAA’s annual convention, contact the HLAA Meeting Planner.

The HLAA Convention has workshops, a trade show with all the latest technology and services, is communication accessible (real-time captioning and assistive technology in all sessions) and is a lot of fun!

Meet Sgt. 1st Class (Ret.) David Schible

Photo of Sgt. 1st Class David Schible
Sgt. 1st Class David Schible in Afghanistan

Hearing loss has not stopped David Schible in the least. Recently retired after 20 years of service in the U.S. Army, David Schible continues to fight the war on hearing loss, speaking to every arriving soldier at Fort Stewart to educate them about noise and hearing loss. David doesn’t consider himself a hero after deployments to Afghanistan, Iraq and Kuwait. But he is to us – in addition to serving this great country, David spends much of his personal time giving back to the community, often with the Sergeant Audie Murphy Club which does charity work for the homeless and helps the elderly. He also volunteers at the Fort Steward Child Development Center, assisting the games and fun activities for the children. The list of his involvement in his community goes on. You can read David’s story in Fighting the War on Hearing Loss from the November/December 2017 issue of Hearing Loss Magazine (now Hearing Life).

Hard-of-Hearing Heroes Project

Hard-of-Hearing Heroes Project logo

The Hard-of-Hearing Heroes Project is an initiative launched by the National Court Reporters Foundation (NCRF). The aim is to preserve the experiences of veterans with hearing loss for the Library of Congress Veterans History Project. Veterans with hearing loss will be interviewed for the project using CART (communication access realtime translation) captioning. NCRF and HLAA partnered to interview multiple veterans with profound hearing loss at the HLAA headquarters and at the HLAA2017 Convention in Salt Lake City, UT. If you would like to participate in this project, contact April Weiner, NCRF Manager, at aweiner@ncra.org.

View the Veterans History Project Information Guide.

HLAA is proud to be a coalition partner in the Hidden Heroes campaign, a nationwide initiative of the Elizabeth Dole Foundation to bring awareness to the 5.5 million military and veteran caregivers…spouses, parents, siblings and other loved ones who have transformed their lives and set aside their own careers to care for their wounded veteran. Hidden Heroes provides caregivers the help and recognition they deserve.

HiddenHeroes.org is dedicated to helping military caregivers find valuable resources and support and seeks to:

  • Raise awareness of the contributions of military caregivers and the challenges
  • Inspire individuals, businesses, communities, civic and government leaders to take action. (hiddenheroes.org/take-action/)
  • Encourage military caregivers to register at HiddenHeroes.org to better connect them to our coalition partners’ helpful resources and community

HLAA is honored to be a national coalition partner.

Elizabeth Dole Fellows Program
The Fellows program gives military caregivers from all eras of war an effective platform to communicate and influence national policy to better support military caregivers. Dole Caregiver Fellows are the heart and soul of the Foundation. They are military caregivers, carefully selected each year from across to the country to represent the Foundation. Each class consists of approximately 50 Fellows, who serve a two-year term. Find out more about the Dole Fellows Program.

Telecommunications Equipment and Assistive Listening Systems

Please visit our Financial Assistance page for more information about accessing devices at a reduced rate or free of charge depending on the eligibility requirements.

Banner photo of Don Doherty, retired Marine Corps combat veteran, at the Iwo Jima Memorial by Cindy Dyer, Dyer Designs