Funds needed for deaf child

Michael Tortorich
Jaci Kochell, a 10-month-old girl, will have cochlear implant surgery. Donations are being collected to help defray the $35,000 cost.

Looking for an opportunity to serve someone here in the area? Jaci Kochell, a 10-month-old girl, has been diagnosed as deaf in both ears and her family needs assistance paying for surgery to hear.

The Kochell family needs $35,000 to pay for a cochlear implant. Only one ear is covered by insurance.

She has seen a specialist in New Orleans and she is in need of bilateral implants to improve the chances of her living a normal life.

Family and friends are asking for assistance from individuals, businesses and churches in the area to help in any way they can.

The window of opportunity is small since the family must have the money at the time of the surgery, which has been planned for March.

The longer she goes without hearing sounds and words, the longer and more difficult it will be to rehabilitate her speech.

An account has been set up at Chase Bank and United Community Bank under Jaci Kochell Hearing Fund.

Deposits can be made anonymously or a name can be attached.

Donations can also be dropped off at any of the three Ralph’s Market locations. The stores are located in Gonzales, Burnside and Baton Rouge.

As the flyer reads, “Give the gift of hearing, no child should miss hearing the words, ‘I love you.’”