By Lisa Sigell
KCBS 2 Los Angeles
Tyler de Lara seems like a typical three-year-old, extremely outgoing and playful.
But this is a change for Tyler, whose world was silent, until 10 months ago – not able to hear.
His parents say he was so quiet, he wouldn’t play with other kids and kept to himself.
“It was overwhelming, it was depressing at the same time,” Tyler’s dad said.
Now, with two cochlear implants, Tyler can hear; other children, his sister, when his parents’ call his name.
“I think it’s our dream come true,” his mom said.
“In this room, we manufacture the external compounds,” Jeffrey Greiner, Chief Executive Officer for Advanced Bionics in Sylmar, said.
Tyler’s bilateral implants were made at Advanced Bionics in Sylmar – one of three cochlear implant-makers in the world.
“A cochlear implant is a bionic ear. It’s actually a device that stimulates the auditory nerve and enables profoundly deaf people to hear,” Greiner said.
And it’s that miracle which employees are a part of in so many ways.
Today, the team of men and women that actually created Tyler’s bionic ear are meeting him for the first time. It’s a program for the company that’s been going on for two years.
Experts say it’s best if children, like Tyler, get their implants or implant before the age of three so they can develop language skills along with their peers.
For Tyler, this is a whole new world of sound.
For his parents, a new beginning.
You see, Tyler wasn’t talking before the implants. Now sounds and words are coming out and there are two his parents can’t wait to hear… mommy and daddy!
“I’m waiting for that day,” his dad said.
“Mommy and daddy will be… it’s a moment, our big moment,” Tyler’s mom said.
And this is a moment they’ll remember too… meeting the people who changed their lives – giving their son the gift of hearing.
“Grateful, they made it possible for him,” Tyler’s dad said.
To learn more about the cochlear implants and Advanced Bionics, click on the link below.