Summarized by Eric Bunker
Teen triumphs over hearing loss
Deseret News 3Jun99 L5
By Jose Luis Sanchez Jr.: Deseret News staff writer
BOUNTIFUL, UTAH -- For 18-year-old Joshua Jackson, the sound of dripping
water is a treasure beyond price. It's something he has been able to
experience only since February when he obtained the most recent in a long
line of hearing aids.
"I've been able to hear things I've never heard before," said Joshua,
enthusing about his new aid. "I can even hear the buzz of lights and
All his life, Joshua has been struggling to hear and make himself
understood. Learning to talk took five years of hard work at the Utah
School for the Deaf and Blind. One of his ambitions remains to be able to
talk to someone on the phone "all by myself."
"When I was young I had a very hard time. They were pushing me very hard.
But they did a good job," Jackson said of his teachers at the School for the
Deaf and Blind. Today, he understands people partly through hearing and
partly through reading lips. Tutors have been available to help with what he
misses in class.
His struggles have not kept him from developing a cheerful personality, a
sense of humor or from becoming a popular student with a 3.5 grade point
average at Bountiful High School. He is very outgoing and one of more
popular kids in school and has no problem conversing with the opposite sex.
When he comes of age, Joshua he wants to go on a mission. It doesn't matter
where, but he wants it to be a regular LDS Church mission.
"Some people say I should learn to do sign language and go on a signing
mission, but I want to go on a normal mission . . . there's more people in
the world who talk than sign," Joshua said.
When he comes back, he wants to become a teacher to help youngsters like
himself. If there is something Jackson wants everyone to know, it's how
grateful he feels to all the teachers who have helped him. "My teachers have
been my best friends."