Can you imagine your baby having life-saving heart surgery, and you are hundreds of miles away?
This was just the scenario Army Specialist “Rory”* found himself in a few weeks ago while he was deployed to Camp Shelby, Miss., with the local National Guard unit preparing for an overseas tour of duty. Rory and “Natasha’s” baby boy, “Sean,” was born nine months ago with a life-threatening heart condition. In March, he was transported to Levine’s Children Hospital in Charlotte for surgery.
Sean’s young mother needed desperately to have Rory return home to Wingate, N.C., to help the family through this crisis and to be there with his son. Within hours of making contact with the Union County Chapter of the American Red Cross, Sean’s commanding officer received the urgent Red Cross message verifying the need for the emergency presence of the soldier back home. Rory returned home immediately, providing an important source of support for baby and Mom.
Baby Sean suffered a stroke one week after the surgery, but the young soldier was able to stay an additional week with his child to see him through the setback. Fortunately, Sean’s outlook is much better now, and he is recovering in the arms of his mother, who expressed her gratitude to the American Red Cross in helping to reunite Sean and his father during this critical time.
(*Names changed to protect our clients’ confidentiality.)
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