Several Lakewood Rotarians participated in a tour of the Virginia Merrill Bloedel Hearing Research Center at the University of Washington Wednesday. The event was sponsored by Rotarians for Hearing Regeneration, an international support group of Rotarians organized by Lakewood’s Clover Park Rotary Club.
Gene Pankey, retired auto dealer and president of Rotarians for Hearing Regeneration, said the group of 13 who participated included Lakewood Rotary Club President-elect Greg Horn, club member Bill Young and his wife, Gwen; Parkland-Spanaway Club president Jay Peterson, a Lakewood resident; and Tacoma Narrows Rotary Club (University Place and Fircrest) president Bob Rummell and past president Karol Whealdon-Andrews. Also on hand was Dave Sclair of Lakewood Rotary and vice-president of RfHR.
Others included the district governor and governor elect of the area’s Rotary District as well as Mary McBride, Senator Patty Murray’s office director. The senator is interested because of her assignment to the Veterans Affairs Committee.
RfHR has been working with the researchers at the UW for several years in attempts to raise funding for the research into hearing regeneration. Since the war on terror has resulted in large numbers of returning troops suffering from hearing loss and there is a large number of returning military throughout the area, the research is extremely important.