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A Little Girl’s Fight To Survive Reminds Us How Fragile Life Can Be

In Children and Family, Health, Local News, National News, Opinion, psychology, Religion, Science, Technology, Uncategorized on July 17, 2012 at 10:36 pm

Aubrey Jones

By Gery L. Deer

Deer In Headlines

 

My three-year-old cousin Aubrey is a bright, inquisitive and sensitive little girl who loves to play and laugh and be a kid. Every time I see her she is full of energy and doing all the things that little girls do.

Aubrey’s mother, Lindsey, is a cheerleading coach with four different teams ages 3 to 18, including teams in Fairborn and TippCity. Over the weekend of July 14, Lindsey, her husband Jon, Aubrey, and her baby sister, 4-month-old Kennedy, left their home in Fairborn, Ohio to attend a cheerleading tournament in Indianapolis, Indiana. But soon after they arrived, cheerleading was the last thing on their minds.

On Saturday, Aubrey began to spike a fever and was soon taken to the emergency room at a hospital near the IndianapolisConvention Center. What was originally thought to be a simple viral bug turned out to be a very serious bacterial infection. With almost no warning, little Aubrey was suddenly very ill, and her family was frightened.

Soon she was moved to RileyHospital for Children at IndianaUniversity where she was quickly placed in intensive care. Her tiny body was succumbing to what doctors called a super strain – a severe and aggressive strep-related bacterial infection that is resistant to most individual antibiotic treatment measures.

Since she was admitted, her body has shut down twice, being overcome by infection and high fever. After the first incident, doctors performed surgery to remove some of the infected fluid from her lungs and chest. Early Tuesday morning her condition worsened yet again as destroyed bacteria began to release dangerous toxins into her bloodstream and she crashed once more.

Battling septic shock her organs keep trying to shut down, but little Aubrey clings to life. We nearly lost her a couple of times since this ordeal began, but she is hanging on, swollen and with machines maintaining her functions to give her body a chance to rest.

Aubrey cannot be stabilized enough at this point to be moved to a hospital closer to home so her family is taking turns at her bedside. The stress, exhaustion and expenses are all increasing with each passing day.

I spent Tuesday afternoon and early evening at RonaHillsPark in Fairborn to help Lindsey’s cheerleading students and their parents mobilize door-to-door to collect donations. Aubrey’s seven-year-old sister, Kaydynce is staying with relatives nearby and was on hand to help along with her grandmother and great grandmother.

As I write this, little Aubrey is still in intensive care, kept sedated and in a coma-like state. Her family still waits hopes and prays for all to turn out well. Stranded two-hundred miles from home, they are fighting fatigue, fear and the worry of mounting expenses.

Family and friends, like the cheerleading squads, have pulled together to raise money and there are bank accounts and websites. The incredible outpouring of support is overwhelming and wonderful to see in an age of cynicism and self-absorption.

It’s hard to comprehend how a microscopic creature can swarm and multiply in the blood of a tiny, innocent child, altering the life path of everyone who is close to her. Her world, and that of her family and friends, has been irrevocably altered. Little Aubrey’s plight has brought people together for a common good. Hopefully we never forget and are forever mindful of the fragility of life because in a moment, everything can change.

If you would like to help little Aubrey’s family, donations are being accepted online at http://www.indiegogo.com/aubreyssick and at area Fifth-Third Bank branches. Just make a donation deposit in the name of Aubrey’s mother, Lindsey Warner (Jones).

 

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