Charlotte March for Babies Ambassador Family to Walk for Babies
Charlotte, North Carolina, April 25, 2013
“You really don’t know how many people have been touched by prematurity or birth defects that you come in contact with every day,” stated Carey Kuznar, Mom of the 2013 Charlotte March for Babies Ambassador Family.
Carey and Zachary Kuznar are the proud parents of 5 year old twins, Evan and Keira. Evan and Keira were born prematurely, at 31 ½ weeks gestation. They were born 2 months before their due date.
“Right around the time Zak graduated from Yale with his PhD, we decided to start a family,” said Carey. However, after years of trying with no success Zachary and Carey began undergoing fertility treatments. In the fall of 2006, they found out they were pregnant with twins. “We were absolutely thrilled! We had hoped and prayed for such news for a while,” she said.
Carey began to experience contractions around 24 weeks into her pregnancy. She was later diagnosed with preeclampsia. Preeclampsia is a form of high blood pressure which occurs during pregnancy. Evan and Keira were delivered in June of 2007 via emergency C-section. Their Mom’s blood pressure had spiked to a life threatening, 240 over 160. “It is only by the grace of God that I didn’t have a stroke with a blood pressure reading like that.”
Evan was born first. Weighing 3 pounds, 4 ounces. “He was completely blue and not breathing when he came out,” stated Carey. “His lungs were compromised and at that time, he needed a ventilator to live.”
Keira weighed 2 pounds, 3 ounces at the time of delivery. “She came out screaming. She was and is our little feisty fighter,” said Carey.
She went on to say, “Going into the NICU to visit my babies, babies that should have been in my arms but instead, they were in these little boxes and a part from each other caused me to mourn that initial bonding time with them.”
Evan’s lungs were so underdeveloped that he had to undergo various surgeries and procedures before being released from the NICU after a 74 day stay.
“Today both twins are healthy and thriving. Keira is a tough girly girl; she’ll fall, skin her knees and not even cry. While Evan is my drama king. When he falls, the whole town hears. He’s so bright and witty. And they are truly best friends.”
The March of Dimes is pleased to have the Kuznar family serve as the 2013 Charlotte March for Babies Ambassador Family. As Ambassadors, the Kuznar family will speak at local and regional meetings, explaining how the March of Dimes has benefited them and encouraging others to join the cause.
“Whether you have babies now or in the future, it’s so important to support the March of Dimes,” said Carey. “There is nothing more worthwhile than helping helpless, little babies have a great start and a fighting chance to thrive in this world. And that’s what March of Dimes and March for Babies is all about.”
March for Babies is the March of Dimes’ largest annual fundraiser nationwide, raising over $2 billion since its start in 1970. Funds raised helps moms have healthy; full-term pregnancies, fund research to find answers to the problems that threaten babies’ lives, and provide comfort to families who have a baby in neonatal intensive care.
The Charlotte March of Dimes walk is this Saturday, April 27, 2013 at Uptown Charlotte, the corners of Trade and Tryon at the Square. Registration begins at 9 a.m. The walk to follow at 10 a.m.
In 2013, the March of Dimes celebrates its 75th anniversary and its ongoing work to help babies get a healthy start in life. Early research led to the Salk and Sabin polio vaccines that all babies still receive. Other breakthroughs include new treatments for premature infants and children with birth defects. About 4 million babies are born each year in the United States, and all have benefited from March of Dimes lifesaving research and education.
A recent picture of Evan and Keira
Keira and Evan seen here with their parents, Carey and Zak.