Calling it a miracle, a 75-year-old veteran from Virginia has credited God and the powerful earthquake that shook much of the East Coast for helping to restore his hearing.
"It was God's blessing," Robert Valderzak told ABC News. "It was a miracle for me."
Valderzak had fallen and fractured his skull on June 19, Father's Day, and suffered severe hearing loss, according to doctors.
His diagnosis changed, however, when the 5.8-magnitude earthquake, centered near Richmond, literally shook Valderzak out of his bed last week.
The father of four was visiting with his children at the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Washington, D.C., where he was being treated for cancer, when the earthquake struck.
"It shook me terrible – right out of the bed," Valderzak told the news network. "But after that it stopped. And my son talked to me, and I could hear his voice."
Although doctors confirm that the war veteran's hearing has improved since the earthquake, they believe medicine, rather than God, was at play in his recovery.
"He had conductive hearing loss, caused by fluid in his middle ear, as well as loss due to nerve damage," said Dr. Ross Fletcher, chief of staff at the Veterans hospital. "A combination of a drug he was taking and the earthquake event itself likely led to him losing the fluid and gaining back his hearing."
Despite Fletcher's explanation, Valderzak maintains his view that God's hand was involved and believes it was no coincidence that his family was present when the earthquake occurred.
"Why did it happen at that time, with my whole family there? There was God's touch in there," he said.
Valderzak, who fought in both the Korean and Vietnam wars, has been a patient at the Veterans hospital since 1967, when it first opened.
"All these things I've been through to get my hearing back, I've seen plenty of doctors, and none could figure out why I couldn't get it back," he said.
"It was a miracle. And now I'm going to beat cancer, too."