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March of Dimes Rhode Island Chapter

220 West Exchange St. #003

Providence, RI  02903

(401) 454-1911

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    New Milford Family Named Danbury March for Babies Ambassadors

    Leigh-Anne Lefurge, March of Dimes, (860) 815-9353, llefurge@marchofdimes.org

    Bittner family to speak at March for Babies in Danbury on Sunday, May 4

    Danbury, CT, March 13, 2014 —



    On Sunday, May 4, hundreds from the Danbury area will gather for March for Babies at its new location at Ives Concert Park at Western Connecticut State University to benefit the March of Dimes.  Leading the festivities will be the event’s 2014 Ambassadors, Joseph and Jessica Bittner of New Milford, along with their 2 ½ year-old twins, Haley and Briella. They will share the twins’ prematurity journey, and thank walkers for their commitment to the March of Dimes mission to give all babies a healthy start. 

    Jessica was experiencing some health difficulties during her pregnancy, and eight weeks before her due date the twins were born weighing 3 pounds, and 3 pounds 12 ounces.  Both girls required feeding tubes and had bilirubin light therapy to help with jaundice.  Briella also a hole in her lung and required CPAP breathing therapy.   They ultimately spent 6 and 6 ½ weeks in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Danbury Hospital.

    “At first the NICU was extremely scary for me and we were not even able to hold Briella until she was a week old,” said Jessica.  “The nurses became our friends and people we could call at any hour of the day or night for help or questions. Leaving the hospital first with Haley was bittersweet because Briella had to stay for a few more days.”

    Today, Haley and Briella are happy and healthy, and love baby dolls, music, dancing and gymnastics.  “Both girls are extremely social and happy children.  They talk so well and have developed into the most amazing two little ladies,” said Jessica.  They will celebrate their third birthday in June.

    Walkers can meet the family and hear their story at March for Babies at Ives Concert Park 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/danbury or marchofdimes.org/ct.

    “I believe it is important to share our journey with other families, to show that there is hope.  We were so fortunate to have a positive outcome.  We hope that more people get involved and realize the importance of helping these babies and families, and that more research can get funded so that more babies can have a healthy start,” said Jessica.

    Danbury March for Babies is sponsored locally by Scalzo Group Real Estate Services, Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMACT), 98Q and WLAD 800AM (Berkshire Broadcasting), 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.

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