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East Grand Rapids Kicker plays with cochlear implant

Posted at 11:37 PM, Sep 24, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-25 16:29:32-04

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich --

The atmosphere of a high school football game, the intensity of the team, the big hits, the screaming fans.  Imagine you couldn't hear any of it.

"I can't imagine," says Brenden Micho.  "You can't hear anything, can't be in a hearing world."

The fact is, if it wasn't for the cochlear implant Brenden Micho received at age two, he wouldn't be able to hear any of it.

"It goes through my cochlear inside my brain," says Micho.  "If I take it off I can't hear anything."

As the starting kicker and punter for East Grand Rapids, Brenden has gotten through the challenge of playing with the cochlear implant by sometimes taking it out.

"Sometimes I go out I unplug my cochlear implant if a lot of people are around yelling at me and so I just unplug, relax, focus, kick, make it and walk away and then I plug it back in," said Micho.

"People try to do that mentally and the fact that he can do that physically tells you a little bit about him," says East Grand Rapids coach Peter Stuursma.  "He just wants to block it out and do his job.  It's always been something that he's looked at and said 'hey this is what I have, I'm gonna work through it and it's not going to hold me back from what I want to accomplish,' and that's a gift that he brings to it."

And a gift is exactly how he would explain the blessing of being able to have the cochlear implant.

"I mean, it's amazing that I have a cochlear implant," says Micho.  "It's just the way God made me, you know, it's just awesome."

Brenden and the Pioneers will look to improve upon their 3-1 record when they face Grandville on Friday.