The Walther twins are home
A six week wait for two anxious parents has finally come to an end. Twins Mason John and Isabella Grace Walther, born prematurely on July 14, are home from North Carolina.
Caledonia-Mumford varsity football coach John Walther and his wife Diana were on vacation in the Smokey Mountains when the babies came early. Mason John weighed two pounds and two ounces, and Isabella Grace was one pound, 13 ounces. The twins were delivered by emergency cesarean section at a small hospital and transported to Brenner Children’s Hospital in Winston-Salem, N.C.
On Monday, the babies finally arrived at Golisano Children’s Hospital and into the arms of their parents.
Doctors estimated that the babies could possibly need to be in the NICU until their original due date, which was mid-October.
A specialized air ambulance was the only way to transport the babies back to Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong Memorial but it was not covered by the family’s health insurance.
The Cal-Mum community hosted a benefit on August 24 called Bring the Babies Home, that was hugely successful, raising around $16,000, enough to pay for the babies’ transport. Additional donations came in via an online donation site and through a fund set up at Bank of Castile.
The Walthers arrived at the Bring the Babies Home event, held at Four Corners Ministry Center on Caledonia-Avon Rd., Caledonia, the future site of Avon Wesleyan Church, and were greeted by their family and friends.
As they surveyed the crowd gathered to support them, there were smiles and tears of joy.
An estimated 400 people attended Bring the Babies Home. Volunteers served a buffet of various foods donated by area restaurants and merchants. Over 225 gift baskets and gift certificates were donated by local merchants and raffled off during the evening.
Special guests included the Livingston County District Attorney Greg McCaffrey and family, Livingston County Court Judge Dennis Cohen and family, and the Livingston County Sheriff’s Department Mounted Patrol. Organizers were more than pleased with the attendance, — and moreover, the show of support from the community, both in terms of organizing, working and attending.
“The minute the Cal-Mum staff and community heard that their co-worker, their teacher, or their coach was in need of help, a committee quickly formed to Bring the Babies Home.”
With the help of John and Diana’s family, Cal-Mum community, and local businesses, a contagious energy grew amongst the committee.
“We wanted what the parent so desperately needed was to get their twins closer to home and family. The Cal-Mum community embraced the Bring the Babies Home benefit way beyond expectations,” said commented Janet Cappotelli, one of the organizers. “The committee once again is proud to be a part of such a kind, caring, and giving community. We proved what a community can do to give back to those in need,”
The Walthers are thankful to have their babies back in the vicinity of their home. It’s been a stressful last few weeks and the couple knows the babies have several more weeks in the NICU ahead of them.
But at least now they are surrounded by grandparents, family and friends, and that makes all the difference.
“We’re just glad to have them home and closer to family. The transport went well and we’re just getting adjusted to everything here,” John said just hours after the babies arrived at Strong Memorial Hospital.