Young Family Suffers Tragic Loss of Wife & Mom

YOUNG MOM PASSES UNEXPECTEDLY 5 DAYS AFTER GIVING BIRTH

LEAVES BEHIND NEWBORN, 2 OTHER CHILDREN, AND DEVASTATED FATHER

A newborn named Sam compels me to convey his Mom’s woeful story.

I live in a small town nestled in central Pennsylvania. The tragedy that has befallen my new neighbor is of such epic proportions that I am reaching out to the larger community to assist him. I pray this story finds you.

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Danny is a father whose entire world has been turned upside down – an unimaginable loss. He is in the deepest throes of his pain and must still be a rock for his two children, aged 7 and 8, as well as his newborn baby boy, Sam. He is now Dad and Mom, suddenly and forever. There will no longer be breaks, if parenting was ever easy in the first instance. Virginia, who was 30 years old upon passing, will never again band-aid an injured knee, bake warm cookies on a cold day, read a bedtime story, or kiss her kids goodnight. She will not witness newborn Sam’s first steps or be present at all his ensuing milestones. Newborn Sam will never know his Mom’s smell or embrace. Birthdays will never be the same. Parent-Teacher interviews will only have one attendee. Soccer practices will have one cheering parent, not two. Virginia will not grow old with her husband and best friend. She will never sprout a white hair or become a grandmother. Thanksgiving will never be the same. Christmas will never be the same. Graduations will never be the same. Weddings will never be the same. All the first moments in Danny and Virginia’s kids’ lives will never be the same. There will always be one empty chair at the table.

DETAILS OF THE STORY

Virginia was sent home five days after a complicated hospital delivery. Less than 24 hours later, Virginia’s ill-health expressed itself so quickly that she was promptly cared for by a whole crew of EMTs while three ambulances remained parked in the driveway. Danny did not go with Virginia to the hospital, as he had to wait for a family member to arrive on the scene to care for his two older kids and 5-day old Sam. Virginia passed away shortly after arrival at the local emergency center. She died suddenly and in a sterile manner, without the presence of her Danny, her 7-year-old daughter, her 8-year-old son, and her newborn, Sam. She was 30 years old.

This husband and father wept and exclaimed how he had lost his sweetheart, his wife, his best friend, his children’s mom, the household’s rock, the center of his universe, and his Everything. Danny stared off into empty space as if in a black hole – and I imagine that he was. In lighter moments, I learned that Virginia had been a hard worker, a protective and doting Mom, a fervent believer in family, Danny’s champion, a gentle soul to all she touched, and Danny’s sister’s best friend. Danny proudly looked at pictures of an exceptionally beautiful young women, sporting the kindest eyes, and in the prime of her life.

Life can unbelievably cruel. Instead of the joy of communion with Virginia at the birth of a divine new life, Danny endured a phone call from the coroner who spouted off the particulars of an autopsy report. Instead of partaking in the intense joy of holding his newborn baby boy, Danny spent time arranging a wake and a funeral. He told me how surreal it was to be selecting a casket instead of a bassinet. He sat shocked at the cost of the memorial services. In between, I hugged a man that I hardly yet knew, so tightly and for so long. These are moments that life does not prepare you for, but whose instructions are etched in the heart’s DNA. It was obvious that newborn Sam resembled his now deceased Mom. I watched Danny’s eyes water as he nursed newborn Sam and surveyed his petite face. This tender scene will linger until my own dying breath.

Danny’s source of income had been reduced during the restrictions of the months leading up to the new birth, and yet the couple plodded along without lament. He and his wife were an extremely private couple that preferred to struggle unto themselves rather than to reach out for assistance. With both parents working and increasingly less income, there was little time to perfectly arrange the new rental house, completely prepare for the new arrival, and happily greet all the curious neighbors in their new community. Virginia only ceased working the first week of September 2020, into her ninth month of pregnancy. Danny’s Mom and sister are now the main pillars of his support, but his family cannot be present all the time as they live hours away. While Danny is a private man that never tilted towards any external help, he is beginning to recognize the need for many blessings beyond his control.

Danny is in such shock and so overwhelmed that he is unable to articulate his needs – he cannot begin to imagine what his new life, missing a wife and a Mom, will demand. I have a small community behind me that wants to help, and our goal is to be effective with our assistance. However – it has become clear that though we are a commendable little army of helpers, much of Danny’s needs are larger than we can possibly fulfill.  Danny needs healthy prepared meals for his family, baby items and infant formula, household items, the ability to pay unexpected funeral expenses, the ability to pay his rent, domestic help for the kids and the house, baby-sitting so that he can free himself to fetch groceries and run errands, social and counseling support for himself and his kids, legal assistance, administrative assistance, and potentially a reliable family vehicle. Danny needs a whole lot of hugs too – which he is not averse to admit now. This is his new normal.

The amount that the community has estimated for Danny’s needs is inclusive of all that is listed above. It remains conservative, nonetheless. Whilst our little community will continue to assist Danny in our pedestrian manner, we are all praying for a financial lift that is beyond our collective capacity. The entire community thanks you from the bottom of our hearts…... and that of Virginia’s, whose voice we have now become.


Much Love to All,

A very caring neighbor


N.B. Please know that the names of all individuals have been masked in order to protect the family’s privacy, and especially because of the children involved.

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Organizer

Ingrid Bottausci 
Organizer
State College, PA
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