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NMMC NICU Has Big Impact On Area

Posted by Allie Martin | August 16, 2012 / 09:18pm | Health
TUPELO, MISS. (WCBI) - Whenever he visits the NICU, 6 month old Will Penny gets a lot of attention.

Will spent a lot of time here.

"133 days," his Dad, Doug said.

Doug and Kara Penny were excited about being new parents.  Kara was pregnant with twins when she went in for a checkup in mid January.
The doctor noticed a problem and two days  later, on January 19th,
she was delivering Will and Drew, at 24 weeks.

Will weighed one pound one ounce,  his twin brother drew weighed one pound 8 ounces.  Drew passed away, but Will , shown here, with a dollar bill next to him,  to give a perspective of his size, fought

He was on a ventilator for months, but slowly, his health improved.
Nurses and doctors provided around the clock care and became like a
second family to the Pennys.

"As a parent, you are scared, theres nothing you can do , it's out of
your control, so having that personal relationship, they tell you
what's going on, how serious, what they're plan is, but more
importantly, you get to interact with adults, and they talk about
their kids, get to know grandparents,  they know you by name and are a real special group," Doug said.

Jessica Fears is part of that special group.  She spent more time with
Will than anyone else.

"You are with them at their roughest time.  Nobody expects to hae a
baby early.  You have hopes and dreams you will have a well baby.  We are here to help you through when you don't have a well baby so he can go home with you," Fears said.

On May 31st, 25 days after his due date, Will Penny was healthy enough to go home.

"It was very hard for us to leave here on May 31st because of all the
relationships, basically, we're leaving our family behind and  but we
were taking home our new family, as a family of three, it's always a
joy to come back and see everybody and talk to them and let them know how he's doing now," said his Mother, Kara.

Will is 12 pounds now, and his entire family has a deep appreciation
and admiration for those who serve at the NICU.

"I've said this many times, you drive by this place everyday, going to
work to the store, you say , it's a place to have babies.  So until
you are here and really see first hand what goes on, it's a miracle,
it's a miracle," said Grand Dad Steve.

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