Ashley Staley and her father
By Anne Allred
ST. PETERS, Mo. (KSDK) - A St. Peters man who has been deaf for more than 50 years is hearing the world around him for the first time. But one sound he finally heard has forever changed his life.
Ken Stehle's 15 year-old-daughter Ashley is a passionate singer. The freshmen is part of Villa Duchesne High School's advanced show choir. Her father never heard her utter a single note until this past Sunday.
Ken received a new hearing aid that requires him to wear a receiver around his neck. The new technology also requires Ashley to wear a special microphone. Her voice is then picked up by Ken's receiver and transmitted to his hearing aid.
"I knew he was getting a hearing aid but I didn't know if it was going to work," Ashley said.
But Ashley was hoping for a Christmas miracle. As she prepared for the annual Christmas concert at her high school on Sunday, Ashley's music teacher offered her the chance to do her first solo.
Ashley chose the song "Daddy Please Come Home For Christmas" and practiced for days hoping her father would be able to hear her voice on Sunday.
"We decided not to put it in the program. It was going to be a complete surprise," she said.
When Sunday came, Ashley's Christmas miracle became a reality.
"He was just closing his eyes and listening to my voice. He didn't really care if he was seeing me because he has always seen me, he wanted to hear me and that was just awesome," she said.
After the solo, the two embraced in front of the packed crowd.
MORE: See Ashley's solo and their embrace
"It's amazing, I had goose bumps all over me. I'm very proud of my daughter," Ken Stehle said.