Field at sunrise

The Gaines and Verebs - Aubrey and Fallon's Story

Denita, Jim and their babies Aubrey and Fallon had a happy ending because of the care they received at Mercy Medical Center’s NICU.

Here is their story:

Denita shares, “Our story started when our pregnancy ended at 29 weeks and 4 days due to my water breaking at home. This was my first pregnancy, with twins no less, I was one scared mama!”  Denita walked into the ER of Mercy Medical Center Redding at 6:32 am on a Wednesday and delivered nearly 48 hours later that Friday. 

Baby A aka Aubrey weighed a whopping 2 pounds and 11 ounces. Four minutes later Baby B aka Fallon made her debut weighing 3 pounds and 6 ounces.  “From the moment we arrived at Mercy the level of care we received was unparalleled.

James and I could not have asked for a more capable and compassionate team of doctors and nurses,” Denita and James share.  Their baby girls were whisked away to the NICU moments after birth and were there for the next 74 days. 

Without a NICU at Mercy Medical Center Redding, Aubrey and Fallon would have been flown down to UC Davis.  “As a first-time parent, any parent for that matter, the level of stress and anxiety labor and delivery brings alone is exponential, throw in any kind of health issue with your brand-new bundle of joy and that level of stress heightens.”

Denita and James believe that no parents should have to endure the coordination of traveling, housing, food, and other hardships when having a baby.  “Being able to be close to home and surrounded by the love and support of our family and friends was absolutely crucial to staying focused and getting through the highs and lows of NICU life."

“We had a happy ending.  Our baby girls came home with us.  Not all parents get that happy ending.  If this program saves one baby, well then that’s a no brainer to support it… right?!” encourages Denita. 

Aubrey and Fallon are now going on two years since their NICU journey.  “Not a DAY goes by no matter how hard, that we don’t take a moment, sometimes more than one, to think of those who gave us our girls as we savor a precious giggle, cuddle or kiss.  I know parents who don’t get to do that, and I don’t want to waste a single moment!”

Denita, Jim and the girls have kept in touch with a number of staff at the NICU, sending pictures and cards regularly. “They will always have a piece of our heart, a place in our family and a chair at our table.  THANK YOU isn’t enough, it never will be, but I’m going to say it anyway.” 

Mercy Foundation North is proud to share Aubrey, Fallon, Jim and Denita’s NICU journey.  We are happy to say both girls are thriving and healthy. Our mission is to ensure our community has access to exceptional care from birth through end of life.  If you would like to learn about the needs of the NICU, please click here.