Deep River Family Named March of Dimes Greater Mystic Ambassadors
Leigh-Anne Lefurge, March of Dimes, (860) 815-9353, firstname.lastname@example.org
Spearrin family to speak at March for Babies in Mystic on Sunday, May 4Mystic, CT, March 07, 2014
On Sunday, May 4, hundreds from the Connecticut shoreline will gather for March for Babies at Olde Mistick Village in Mystic to benefit the March of Dimes. Leading the festivities will be the event’s 2014 Ambassadors, Ryan and Jessica Spearrin of Deep River, along with their children Carley and William. They will share the story of William’s premature birth, and thank walkers for their commitment to the March of Dimes mission to give all babies a healthy start.
Jessica was due with William on July 25, 2011, but due to suffering from preeclampsia (high blood pressure during pregnancy) and HELLP syndrome (a life-threatening pregnancy complication usually considered to be a variant of preeclampsia with symptoms such as the breaking down of red blood cells, elevated liver enzymes and low platelet count), William was delivered on May 19, 2011, weighing just 2 pounds 11 ounces. Like many babies born very early, his underdeveloped lungs were one of his biggest health complications. To help mature his tiny lungs quickly, he received surfactant, a therapy developed with help from March of Dimes grantees.
William also suffered from numerous complications due to his early arrival such as apnea, jaundice, underdeveloped kidneys and bladder, and respiratory distress syndrome. He ultimately spent 64 days in the neonatal intensive care unit at UConn Health Center in Farmington before coming home.
“It was such an emotional time. We celebrated the little moments and prayed during the challenging times,” said Jessica. “No parent is ever prepared to have their child born early.”
Today William is a healthy 2 ½ year old, but has undergone multiple surgeries to correct his underdeveloped bladder, and remains under a specialist’s care for his eyes. “He is a fun-loving little boy who loves his big sister,” said Jessica. “He also loves the guitar and big trucks!”
“We hope that by sharing our story we will raise awareness about prematurity and other serious complications that mothers and babies can face,” said Jessica. “We know that without March of Dimes funded research, William would not be here today. And we know that there much work left to be done. Our biggest wish is for all babies to be born healthy.”
March for Babies participants can meet the family and hear their story at March for Babies at Olde Mistick Village on Sunday, May 4. Registration begins at 9:00 a.m. with the walk kicking off at 10:00 a.m. To register visit marchforbabies.org/event/greatermystic or marchofdimes.org/ct.
Greater Mystic March for Babies is sponsored locally by Mohegan Sun, Advanced Improvements, Bob’s Discount Furniture, Olde Mistick Village, The Day, Soft Rock 106.5 WBMW and Jammin 107.7, kidtivity.com, and is supported by statewide sponsors, NBC Connecticut and Comcast. March for Babies is sponsored nationally by the March of Dimes number one corporate supporter Kmart, Macy’s, Famous Footwear, Cigna, Sanofi Pasteur, Mission Pharmacal, and United Airlines.
For more than 75 years, moms and babies have benefited from March of Dimes research, education, vaccines and breakthroughs. Find out how you can help raise funds to prevent premature birth and birth defects by walking in March for Babies at marchforbabies.org. For the latest resources and information, visit marchofdimes.org or nacersano.org. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.