Brinley Mae Raven is a fun, rambunctious little 3 year old and lives in Alpine, Utah with her amazing family. She has 3 sisters and 3 brothers who love her and protect her like none other. Brinley was just 2 months old when the adoption was finalized. Her birth mother was going to abort her, when my aunt and uncle stepped in and told her they would adopt little Brinley, if she would just carry her to term. They would love this baby no matter what the outcome. When Brin was born, she was healthy, and the birth mother had second thoughts about giving her up. At 2 months old, she finally admitted that life with the Ravens was best for her daughter. And so, Brinley is one of the luckiest kids we know. Her family loves her more than one can fathom.
Brinley is 1 of 2 adopted children in this family. Her big brother Jaxon, who is 4, was adopted just months before Brin, from a very similar situation. This family has no shortage of love and compassion. These 2 angels are treated exactly the same as their 5 other siblings and they KNOW they are loved. There are 3 little ones in the house still, and one big sister Sammy, who is a junior in high school. The others are moved out or married. Ariel is the oldest and just had a baby girl of her own; TJ is in college; Chelsea got married a few months ago; and Sterling...he's the big man at home, at 6 years old.
Their amazing father, Troy, has been fighting a battle all his own for the past 10 years. He has had 4 neck surgeries, and the pain he lives with on a daily basis is literally killing him slowly. During one of the surgeries, the surgeon broke his neck, and it was years later that another doctor found the mistake and tried to fix it. But now the nerve damage is so severe that just waking up to face another day is excruciating. But he does it. Troy goes to work day after day, month after month and year after year, to support his family. You never hear him complain, but you can see the agony on his face and in his body language. It is absolutely heartbreaking to watch, knowing there is no relief in sight. His wife Melinda, has picked up the slack with everything else in their lives without complaint because Troy simply can not. She helps with the business every single day, takes care of all her children, and still has time to be kind and thoughtful for others outside of her family. Having 3 little ones at home is exhausting without all of this other added stress, but she handles it so well. She is an angel, an amazing woman married to an amazing man.
Back to Brinley now. This little angel was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia on March 12th, 2014. Brin had been showing signs a few weeks prior of being cold and pale with dark circles under her eyes. When she went to the doctor March 11, they admitted her to Childrens Hospital immediately. Her
was at 3, 14 being normal. A blood transfusion was started that night. The following morning, the family was given the devastating news. A
has been created to tell her story so loved ones can follow her on this long journey that has only just begun. She has already had her first treatment of Chemotherapy, in hopes that it will keep the cancer out of her spinal cord and fluid, so that radiation won't also be necessary. It makes her feel sick, and she gets angry sometimes, but she is a fighter. Her ability to fight off infection is all but gone, and she must wear a mask everywhere she goes.
With the stress and financial hardship this family has been going through for the past several years, this is a devastating blow. When Troy's neck was broken, he was unable to work for years, and was given no compensation. He lost his once very successful roofing company, and they nearly lost their home more than once. They have been trying to just survive and stay afloat with the income they receive from a small pawn shop he now owns. Even with all of this, Troy & Melinda, along with the support of their other children, still took in not 1, but 2 babies who otherwise, would have lost their lives to abortion.
The Ravens do not yet know that we are creating this fundraiser, but if any family deserves some help, it's this one. When they were successful with the roofing company, they helped others on a daily basis. Their extended family, friends and even complete strangers were on the receiving end of their generosity and love on more occasions than we can tell you. The insurance deductible alone is $3,500 a year, and Brinley will have to go in for regular treatments over the next 5 years. Adding that to Troy's medical bills for his neck, the lost time from work to be with little Brinley, the money spent on babysitters to watch Sterling and Jaxon, putting a child through college...the list goes on and on. We don't know how much more these parents can take before they break. If there is anything that can be done for them, we promise a more grateful family could not be found.
Please, help this family. we can imagine now the tears of gratitude flowing if they received some relief. Troy would crawl to the edge of the earth and back if he thought it could save his little girl. That is why they would be so shocked and so grateful. The most help they have ever asked for is simply for others to keep Brinley in their prayers. All we ask is for your to give what you can.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
With great love, hope and appreciation,
Heidi Caine & Jeremy Franklin (very close cousins of Brinley Mae)
- Tom & Debbie Gaetz
- Kristin McAllister
- Anonymous Batman
- Tiffanee Foote
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