Chicago Sports Franchises Team with the HearStrong Foundation to Honor Inspirational Teens

Thu, 23 Apr 2015 06:01:23 EST

Representatives of the Chicago Bears, Chicago Blackhawks, and Chicago NBA legends joined the HearStrong Foundation in Chicago to recognize three athletic teens for helping to change the face of hearing loss in their communities and beyond.

Syracuse, NY (April 23, 2015) — On April 17, Brian McCaskey, senior director of business development for the Chicago Bears, Ashley Hinton, manager of community relations for the Chicago Blackhawks, and NBA Legend Emmette Bryant teamed with the HearStrong Foundation at the Hilton Chicago to celebrate three teens - Brendan Kane, Ian Hanson, and Eliza Peters - for their determination to overcome hearing loss and inspire others to take control of their hearing health.

From left: Brian McCaskey, Emmette Bryant, Brendan Kane, Ed Keller, Eliza Peters, Ian Hanson, La Rue Martin, Jr.

Currently a business student at D’Youville College in Buffalo, NY, Brendan’s experience in tackling obstacles started from a very young age. The Orchard Park, NY native was diagnosed with hearing loss as an infant and first began utilizing hearing devices when he was 18 months old. This early adoption allowed Brendan to adapt very well personally, socially, academically, and athletically. Passionate about lacrosse, Brendan received numerous awards throughout his high school career and served his team as captain.

But Brendan is not the only successful athlete in his family. His cousin is Chicago Blackhawks star Patrick Kane. While Patrick was unable to attend the ceremony, he surprised his cousin with a heartfelt video message.

Ian, of Geneva, IL, was officially diagnosed with hearing loss when he was four years old. Despite his teachers’ early doubts of his ability to thrive in a mainstream classroom, Ian pushed himself to work hard and was soon far exceeding his teachers’ expectations.

A talented baseball player, Ian found a friend in Eliza Peters, an athletic classmate who also utilizes hearing devices. A HearStrong Champion herself, Eliza nominated Ian to be recognized by the foundation. Serving as HearStrong Ambassador during the ceremony, Eliza helped present Ian with his awards.

Passionate about helping other young athletes have access to the hearing devices they need, Eliza started a successful charity called Hear the Cheers. To support her continued efforts, the HearStrong Foundation proudly pledged to donate a pair of hearing devices to her campaign.

“Through their active lives and love of sports, Brendan, Ian, and Eliza are truly shattering the public’s perception of hearing loss,” said Ed Keller, founder and president of the HearStrong Foundation. “We are so grateful to have the support of some of the biggest names in professional sports. Thanks to their energy and passion for helping people improve their lives by hearing better, we are making great strides in our mission to reach the more than 30 million Americans with untreated hearing loss.”

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