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War, butter & improved hearing: Local resident shares his story

Now a member of the “better hearing club,” his life is looking up.
Audibel hearing aid specialist Anny Fernandez, HIS (right), poses with patient James Stuck during a recent visit. Find your nearest Audibel at
Audibel hearing aid specialist Anny Fernandez, HIS (right), poses with patient James Stuck during a recent visit. Find your nearest Audibel at [ Audibel ]
Published Jun. 15
Updated Jun. 15

From serving in the Korean War to working as a butter inspector for the federal government, it’s safe to say James Stuck has been leading an interesting, often unpredictable life.

A veteran artilleryman for the U.S. military, James spent seven months in a Korean combat zone, enduring an especially harsh winter with freezing temperatures approaching -30 degrees Fahrenheit. “‘All gave some; some gave all,’” he noted, quoting fellow veteran and Purple Heart-recipient Howard William Osterkamp.

After he completed his years of military service, James became the ultimate butter connoisseur during his time working as a dairy inspector for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Evaluating up to 200 butter samples per day (possibly more on certain occasions), James graded butter based on taste, aroma, texture and color – the perfect samples received the USDA’s coveted “AA” rating. (Despite all those years tasting butter, James’s cholesterol remained surprisingly low.)

Decades later, the signs of aging manifested in James in the form of a perforated eardrum that prevented him from enjoying sounds, conversations and performances at his favorite dinner theater. “I love going to the Show Palace for dinner and shows, but I was missing everything due to having trouble hearing,” he said.

After reading about Audibel in the Tampa Bay Times, James was determined to seek help for his hearing. During his initial hearing consultation and examination, a friendly and compassionate Audibel hearing aid specialist conducted an audiometric test of James’s ears, explaining its results to him with a detailed audiogram. “It was the most thorough evaluation I’ve ever had,” James shared.

He was then fitted with state-of-the-art wireless hearing aids for his specific issues – and he could not believe how much he had been missing without them.

“My friends and family have welcomed me to the ‘Better Hearing Club,’” he chuckled.

Like James, you can gain a better quality of life through better hearing. All 27 convenient Audibel Hearing Centers throughout the Tampa Bay area offer a free hearing screening with no obligation, as well as a unique 45-day trial on most hearing aids.

“I can’t say enough about Audibel – they have been fantastic,” James added.

Your journey to better hearing begins today: Call your nearest Audibel Hearing Aid Center to schedule your complimentary hearing screening. Visit for more information.