Bradley, 5, says hello to his baby brother, Tristan.
The March of Dimes recently held its kickoff ceremony at All Saints Church in Pawleys Island for the March for Babies 2013 event to be held in Georgetown on April 20 and other locations throughout the country.
Begun in 1970, America’s first and most popular fundraising walk has been a big success each year, thanks to the sponsors and participants in the events, said Gayle Resetar, COO with Georgetown Hospital System and the Georgetown County March for Babies chairperson.
“In 2012, Georgetown County raised almost $84,000 during the March for Babies campaign,” Resetar said. “What an accomplishment. The March of Dimes Georgetown County goal for March for Babies 2013 is $90,000.”
The March of Dimes welcomes families, friends and co-workers to form teams for the upcoming event.
“Let’s continue to fight for our babies,” Resetar said. “What is more important than our next generation?”
Each year, an ambassador family is chosen to represent the many families the March of Dimes and March for Babies continues to help.
This year Tristan Wilson, who was born in October 2013, and his family, Chris and Melissa, and his big brother Bradley, 5, are serving as the 2013 Georgetown County ambassadors.
When Tristan was delivered doctors noticed that he had an abnormal mass on his lower back, about the size of a golf ball.
The doctor diagnosed him with Spina Bifida.
Chris and Melissa were terrified since they didn’t know what would happen.
Tristan was transported to the Medical University of South Carolina Hospital in Charleston.
His parents were told that there were a few different types of Spina Bifida and Tristan had myelomeningocele, which basically means that the mass on his back had the lower part of his spinal cord and part of his vertebra in it.
He would have to have surgery to remove it and have his spinal cord and vertebra placed back in place.
The surgery and his recovery in the NICU went great. Today, Tristan continues to grow stronger.
His parents thank God every day for their family, friends, church family and the research, technology and knowledge of the doctors, nurses and March of Dimes.
“The day Tristan had surgery he was barely only 24 hours old. He weighed about seven pounds and seeing all the tubes hooked to him was scary,” Chris Wilson said.
“But when my wife and I came in the next morning, he was already off the breathing tube and playing with a big smile on his face. The power of prayer is an awesome thing.”
He says he and Melissa are proud to be this year’s ambassadors for the March for Babies.
“We love the March of Dimes,” Chris Wilson said. “Most people think they only help premature children, but also help children with disabilities and other problems at birth.”
For information about March for Babies, or to sign up your team, contact Coleen Sweatt, community director for the March of Dimes, at (843) 438-1113, or (843) 488-3463, or e-mail CSweatt@marchofdimes.com.
By Clayton Stairs
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