On April 10th 2019, 3 tiny baby boys were born far too soon at 25 weeks gestation. At 1 lb 5 oz, 1 lb 11 oz, and 1 lb 13 oz, these boys started a long and hard fight for their lives. 7 weeks later, on May 31st, sweet Owen ended his earthly fight and took up his new fight as guardian angel for his brothers. In the months that have followed, Henry and Kenneth have leaned on their guardian angel brother as they have faced innumerable ups and downs. There have been many dark and scary days when their survival was uncertain. However, they made it through those days and have come such a long way. After a 175 day NICU stay, Henry came home on October 1st. He continues to be oxygen dependent and fed only through his g-tube directly into his stomach. He has been thriving at home, and though he still has a long road ahead of him, he is making great strides. Kenneth has had a tougher journey. Due to his severe lung disease of prematurity, he is still unable to breathe on his own without the support of a ventilator. In August, Kenneth had a trach placed. He will come home with his trach and on his ventilator and will slowly wean off his ventilator as he grows and develops new and healthy lung tissue. This will be a years long journey. Kenneth is still in the NICU but preparing to come home very soon.
Due to their extreme prematurity, the boys have various complications in multiple body systems; some they will outgrow and some will follow them for many years or for life. They have 7 specialist physicians and also participate in physical, occupational, and speech therapy. Because of Kenneth’s trach and vent, he must have a trained adult watching him at all times and therefore will require home nursing care overnight so his parents can rest.
As you can imagine, even with health insurance, these expenses pile up. With frequent appointments, home health equipment, medications, home nursing, and mom leaving her job as a nurse to care for the boys full time, the family’s resources are stretched thin. We are asking for donations to the Burton family to help them cover these expenses. The journey of prematurity does not end when babies come home from the NICU; these boys and their family will be fighting for years to overcome the challenges associated with extreme prematurity. Any amount of money you can donate to them would be a tremendous help and so very appreciated.
- Jan Horgan
- Elise Thiemann
- Louise Ferrante
- Yolanda Tatum
Organizer and beneficiary
Saint Louis, MO