CelebrateOne commemorates Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day with the Strader and Welliver families

October 15, 2015

Community Update: CelebrateOne commemorates Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day with the Strader and Welliver families

CelebrateOne was honored to participate in an event today commemorating Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day.  In recognition of the day and in remembrance of their children being stillborn, the Strader and Welliver families came together to outfit five Central Ohio delivery hospitals with equipment to help ease the challenges families face in saying goodbye to their babies who die or are stillborn.

One in 160 pregnancies end in stillbirth in the United States. A stillbirth is considered the death of a fetus at 20 or more weeks of pregnancy. Approximately 24,000 pregnancies ended in stillbirth in the United States during 2013. To provide support to those having a similar experience as theirs, each family launched their own fundraiser to purchase and donate Cuddle Cots. Cuddle Cots are devices that can be used by hospitals to discretely keep a baby cool at the mother’s bedside following a stillbirth or other infant loss. This device provides a gift of time for parents to properly say goodbye to a child without witnessing post-mortem changes.  Over $16,000 has been raised collectively to date.  Donations continue to be accepted to further this important work at GoFundMe.com/Strader.

Leslie Strader credits her son with being the inspiration for the successful campaign.  “Despite being so small with a life far too brief, my son has managed to make a significant impact on our community,” said Leslie Strader.  “He has made me a proud parent.”

The Strader family was joined by Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman and Columbus City Council President Andrew Ginther at today’s event held in the memorial garden at Kobacker House.  Both credited the Straders and Wellivers with their courage in turning their own personal tragedy into a lasting gift for the community.  The Cuddle Cots were accepted by representatives of each hospital system:  Mount Carmel Health System, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, OhioHealth,  and the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.  The hospitals along with the Central Ohio Hospital Council are active participants in CelebrateOne working together to reduce the number of babies who die in this community.