In 1998 while participating in a long-awaited and highly anticipated family fall duck hunting trip the absolute must for the creation of Harris and Sons became apparent. After the decoys were set, everyone was positioned strategically and the guns were loaded and ready to unleash, it happened, a scattered flock of geese appeared on the horizon and were working their way right into our decoys. Just then with adrenaline pumping in me, I alerted my father “those two, get down!” I sat there perplexed as he stood up, reached into his front coat pocket, grabbed out two shotgun shells, and tossed them towards me. His standing up spooked the geese and they turned, flared, and were out of reach of our guns. After they had disappeared as quickly as they had appeared, I asked him “why didn’t you get down?” He said with a confused look on his face “I thought you said toss you two more rounds?” I explained I was letting him know to get down. It was then that the reality of the seriousness of my Fathers progressive hearing loss became apparent to me.
Later that day as another great hunt was winding down and the calm and magic of dusk were presenting itself, I said while pointing to an area where a big green head went down earlier ”I need to go get that duck!” My uncle responded, “sounds good, get it all warmed up and we’ll load up and get out of here!” Confused and feeling a bit crazy, I walked through the cattails and stream to grab this duck realizing he thought I said I was heading towards the truck.
As I walked the feelings of loss, sadness and frustration came over me. Here were two of my heroes. Two living supermen that I as a kid thought were invincible, tough, in control and that would somehow live forever. Now, to this day, they both were suffering silently from a slow debilitating handicap that would eventually leave them frustrated, embarrassed and isolated from friends and family. I had to come to the painful realization that future hunting trips were not going to be the same. The hard reality that I now had to practice patients, understanding, and empathy where I didn’t before was starting to feel like a burden.
How did this happen I thought? Both these men are highly educated, successful, and great guys. How could they both be suffering from a debilitating communication problem? The simple answer: Years of competition shooting and hunting without wearing hearing protection. As I walked back to the truck alone I noticed the cattail stalks softly rustling against one another, I could hear ducks far off splashing in the water. Although it was getting dark and visibility was low I heard the soft whistling of a small flock of teal zipping overhead. As I got back to the truck I reflected on the day and the hard reality that the current ear pro on the market sucks. But not wearing hearing protection sucks more.
Thus Harris and Sons were created. We wanted to produce the most comfortable, best-sounding hearing protection on the planet. We understood that if hearing protection wasn’t comfortable, or diminished the ability to hear clearly, it wouldn’t be worn.
Through trial and error and thousands of dollars in research and development, our sterling method fitting process ensures the best fit in both comfort and seal, along with our painstakingly developed sound profiles that deliver an accurate and informative response.
The Harris and Sons brand is more than amazing hearing protection, we’re all about stopping the debilitating hearing loss that passes through generations of hunters that causes frustration, misunderstanding, isolation, and even worse, memory loss, dementia, and Alzheimer’s. Harris and Sons hearing performance inserts have traveled the world connecting and protecting family and friends during beautiful hunting moments and will continue to do so.
Lowry Harris receiving honors, 1958