as a baby
7-year-old is 2017 March of Dimes Ambassador
Family Shares Their Story to Help More Babies Be Born Healthy
GREENVILLE, OHIO — A seven-year-old Darke County girl who was born six
weeks premature has been selected as the 2017 March of Dimes Darke
County Ambassador. Join our ambassador family, hundreds of other
families and businesses at the Darke County Fairgrounds for the annual
March of Babies walk. Saturday, May 6, 2017 at 9:00 a.m.
In 2009, Mindy and Jason were excited about becoming parents and
looking forward to starting their family. But their baby Caleigh
arrived unexpectedly at only 32 weeks, weighing less than five
pounds. The pregnancy was considered high risk as a result of
Mindy’s low amniotic fluid and gestational diabetes. Caleigh was unable
to breathe on her own due to her under-developed lungs, which is
typical of prematurely born babies. Due to these complications
she spent her first weeks fighting for life in a hospital Newborn
Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Miami Valley Hospital.
“We thank the March of Dimes for funding the research responsible for
surfactant therapy, the PKU test, ultrasounds, Apgar testing, and NICUs
where our daughter received such wonderful care,” says Jason.
“We’re walking in March for Babies because it saves lives and improves
the health of countless moms and babies!”
In addition to the 5 mile route through Greenville there is a one-mile
fun walk within the fairgrounds. This family-friendly morning also
features free food for the walkers, entertainment, and a kids zone for
the little ones with music, balloons, and face painting along with
games and crafts. This year we will offer a Superhero Sprint for kids
up to 10 years old for a suggested donation of $20 per child or $30 per
family. Participants will receive a purple March of Dimes Cape, while
supplies last, and it will begin at 8:30 a.m.
“The money raised by March for Babies helps give more babies a fighting
chance at a healthy start in life,” says Jackie Allen, Executive
Director, March of Dimes Greater Dayton Market. “The March of Dimes is
committed to providing comfort and information to families such as the
Stebbins family. By joining March for Babies, you also help fund
cutting-edge research to find answers to the unknown causes of
premature birth, and new ways to prevent and treat it.”
Like Caleigh, about 380,000 babies – or one in 10 -- are born too soon
in the United States each year. Premature birth (before 37 weeks of
pregnancy) is the leading cause of death of babies in the U.S.
Those who survive an early birth often face serious and lifelong health
problems, including breathing problems, jaundice, vision loss, cerebral
palsy and intellectual delays. In addition to the human toll, premature
birth accounts for more than $26 billion annually in medical and
The nation’s favorite walking event, March for Babies takes place in
500 communities across the country and involves more than three million
people each year. Register for the event by visiting
marchforbabies.org/event/darkecounty to sign up to walk; start a team
with your company, family, or friends; or donate to help babies survive
The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy
and baby health. For more than 75 years, moms and babies have benefited
from March of Dimes research, education, vaccines and breakthroughs.
For the latest resources and health information, visit our websites
marchofdimes.org and nacersano.org. If you have been affected by
prematurity or birth defects, visit our shareyourstory.org community to
find comfort and support. Find us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
The 2017 March for Babies is sponsored nationally by Kmart, Famous
Footwear, Macy’s, Cigna, and HCA. Locally, March for Babies is
sponsored by Greenville Technology Inc. (GTI), Dave Knapp Ford Lincoln
and Wayne Health Care.
(right) today with her sister Gabriella