After her four-year-old son Anthony told her he didn't want to wear his hearing aid to school anymore because "superheroes don't wear hearing aids," Christina D'Allessandro wrote Marvel asking if there was a hearing-impaired superhero she could use to prove Anthony wrong.
She received a response back from Marvel Entertainment editor Bill Rosemann, who pointed to Hawkeye as an example of a superhero whose hearing was destroyed, requiring him to wear a hearing aid. (His hearing was later restored.)
Realizing this was insufficient, Rosemann and others at Marvel set out to create a brand-new superhero who draws his power from a "listening device." They named the character "Blue Ear" after Anthony's hearing aid.
"When danger makes a sound, the Blue Ear answers the call. Anthony Smith is Blue Ear," reads the cover of Blue Ear's inaugural "comic book."
"From here, anything is possible," D'Allessandro told WHDH-TV. "And that's the way he's looking at it."