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NJ Hospital hosts special reunion for 'preemies'

September 29, 2013 8:35:16 PM PDT
Most children love parties. However the children kicking up their heels Sunday afternoon at Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center have more to celebrate than most - as do their families.

This party was a reunion of babies who spent time in the hospital's Intensive Care Nursery.

Children like 15-month-old McKenzie Kennedy Strickland, who spent four months at Lourdes, after she was born weighing just 1 pound, 7 ounces.

"I want to bring the kids to see the nurses. If it wasn't for them we wouldn't have them," said Lena Strickland, mother.

As grateful as the parents are for the care their newborns received here, the doctors and nurses who work here were grateful for the chance to see how well their one-time charges are doing.

"You see them and that everything you did to help them all paid off. They are living productive lives and growing and developing beautifully," said Janet Daulerio, nurse.

Nurse Peggy Flannery has worked in the Intensive Care Nursery for more than 15 years. She was thrilled to see the Ferreire triplets, Ruth, Francesca and Alba.

The girls are nearly two years old now, but spent their first month in the unit, which cares for an average of 400 babies each year.

"I think I can speak for all of the nurses, it just warms our heart to see them all," said Flannery.

Lavay is 9 months old now but spent the first three months of her life in the hospital.

Her family and the hospital staff hope that she and others come back to the next reunion in two years - happy and healthy.


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