Kipton’s Story

As told by his mother, Casey

He was supposed to be our rainbow

After suffering a miscarriage in 2012, we were excited to finally be expecting our rainbow baby. My pregnancy was very normal and had no problems until the day Kipton stopped moving in utero. My OB suspected there was a problem so he performed an emergency csection, our son had suffered from a maternal fetal hemorrhage. Kipton was on his way to being a stillborn, but we caught it. We thought everything was gonna be ok, but we were devastated when we were told that his MRI showed a massive brain bleed and he was basically brain dead.

The decision to donate

When the nurse practitioner started giving us our options and talking about Kipton’s quality of life, I asked about organ donation. We later found out Kipton was eligible to donate his heart valves and we were happy to donate those. Donating Kipton’s heart valves was the only good thing to come from this tragedy, we wanted to give another child a chance at life, a chance we knew our son would never truly have hooked up to machines. We have a liver recipient in our family so we know what it’s like to be on the side of waiting for an organ, we knew that for one family we could make their wait come to an end and that made his donation worth it. We wanted Kipton’s life to have a purpose, he changed our world completely and we knew by donating his valves he would do that for another family. Kipton would be their hero and that made us so proud, not everyone gets the chance to save a life and be someone’s hero, Kipton lived 9 days and we knew by donating his heart valves that he would be a hero.

Life after donation

Neonatal donation has become very important to us, organ donation as a whole is important, but knowing that neonatal organ and tissue donation doesn’t happen very often makes it very special to us. We are currently only 3 months out from losing our son, but we have gotten involved with helping to raise awareness through our states Donor Family Council and we hope to speak locally and nation wide if that’s what it takes to help raise awareness. Nobody ever wants to think about their child dying, we never did, but it happens and if there is a chance to save another life and have a piece of your child live on then that’s a beautiful light in the midst of a tragedy. Saying goodbye to Kipton was the hardest thing we have ever had to do, donating his heart valves was the easy part. We know our son made a difference in the world, he touched so many lives and opened up a lot of hearts when people found out we donated his heart valves. People asked us “how did you even think about that when your baby was dying”, I simply respond by telling them “how could you not”, somewhere out there is a child that will go on and live a full healthy life because of the gift our son gave them and that is a legacy in itself.

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