Cochlear, Oticon Medical, and Sophono Sponsor the First Annual Microtia and Atresia Family Picnic in Pleasanton, California Through Ear Community…

On Saturday, July 28, 2012, we hosted our Microtia and Atresia Summer Family Picnic in Pleasanton, California! We had nearly 200 people attend our picnic. A very special Thank You to Amy Gile and her family for hosting our picnic. Thank you Amy for also being my host family and allowing me to stay with you and your family! I enjoyed getting to know you and your family and I think the world of

you guys. 🙂 Our day was a beautiful sunny day at 82 degrees and our park location was beautiful! Our Pleasanton picnic was proudly sponsored by Cochlear, Otion Medical, and Sophono. We all enjoyed a delicious lunch that was provided for everyone and the kids had so much fun with the tattoo artist and balloon maker. In fact, the balloon maker made some incredible balloons that were unlike any other balloons that I and nor anyone else had ever seen. They were incredibly detailed and amazing! A very special Thank You to Dr. John Reinisch (the pioneer of the Medpor surgical technique), Dr. Sheryl Lewin (one of the leading Medpor surgeons in the world), and Dr. Russell Griffiths (one of the leading ear reconstructive surgeons in our nation who offers his patients both options for Rib Graft and Medpor and offers them both in one stage surgeries and makes beautiful ears) for joining us at our picnic. It was an honor and pleasure to see you all again! Dr. Reinisch, Dr. Lewin, and Dr. Griffiths each spoke with families and and helped answer questions that they have had for years. Greg Gion, who is one of the nations leading anaplastologists also came to our picnic and helped educate families about prosthetic ear options. Tracy, from Dr. Joseph Roberson’s office, from the California Ear Institute, was at our picnic with a big “Nemo” balloon and lots of goodies for the kids along with being one of our picnic’s sponsors too! We had a few Goldenhar families attend along with some Treacher Collins families and Hemifacial Microsomia families. Some of the kids and adults had surgery and some did not, but this was ideal because everyone had the chance to learn from each other and share experiences. It was amazing to watch everyone learn about hearing loss from the Cochlear, Oticon, and Sophono representatives. What was even more amazing was to watch the reactions on the children’s and adult’s faces when they listened through a Baha/sound processors. One of our picnic goers, Ben, who was 5 days post op from having his first stage of Rib Graft surgery with Dr. Brent, won our stuffed Build-A-Bear teddy bear in our raffle! Ben’s mom, Karla, said he hugged that bear all the way home to their hotel following our picnic. The teddy bear also was this year’s Olympic style bear in celebration for the Olympics. Thank you Build-A-Bear for donating our teddy bear for our picnic! I would also like to thank all of Amy’s friends who helped us by lending us tubs for ice and such! Amy, it was so nice to meet you in person after becoming friends with you through our support group over the past 2.5 years! Amy’s kids and mine are about the same age and we have learned a lot together 🙂 I enjoyed meeting Steph, Stephanie, Jordan, Eva, and Sebastian and Steph’s grandparents. Thank you for helping me host this picnic in your area. I could not have done this without you! I truly enjoyed this picnic as I was able to mingle with so many of you who I have gotten to know through our support group. It was so rewarding to meet everyone! Thank you for supporting me in my mission to help bring families together and in helping educate everyone about “all” of their options.
Thank you everyone for making our 1st California Microtia and Atresia Summer Family Picnic offered through Ear Community such a memorable one.
Melissa Tumblin
Founder of Ear Community and our Support Group for this page
About Melissa Tumblin

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