What’s one of the best parts of having a wedding in front of all your friends and family? The gifts of course!
But for Ashley Sewell and Adam McCully, a wedding with gifts seemed pointless. Ashley wrote on her blog, “Yes, we could register for brand new stuff, but what’s the point? Why would we ask our friends and family to buy us stuff we already have just because it’s new?”
That’s why the couple decided that instead of having a traditional wedding registry, they wanted to raise money for those in need. Adam registered for the charity, Carry the Load, which goes to the families of fallen military, law enforcement, firefighters, and rescue personnel. And Ashley decided to raise money for a little boy named Reese who was abandoned by his family. The funds would help cover his medical bills.
Reese was born on April 17th, 2013, but when he was just six-months old, his family abandoned him near a bridge in China. Reese came into the world with a severe GI defect and was transferred to New Day Foster Home (NDFH). New Day is a place that takes in orphans who have been abandoned, usually because of birth defects.
Ashley explains, “The one-child culture in China does not easily accommodate high-needs children. Cleft lips & palates, heart conditions, liver problems, GI defects, neurological disorders – New Day takes these sweet little ones in & loves them, gives them medical attention, then works to find them forever families.”
The staff at New Day found that Reese was suffering from a severe swollen face, jaundice, and his eyes looked as if they were bleeding. He also had a very high fever. Reese was admitted to a hospital and two months later received a new liver.
Five weeks after the transplant, Reese was still on a ventilator in the ICU. His condition was considered ‘stable but not good’ and his inability to breath on his own began to worry his surgeon. The surgeon and NDFH decided it would be in Reese’s best interest to have a tracheotomy, which is a procedure that helps patient’s breath without using their nose or mouth. The surgery was a success and a few days later Reese was transferred to the regular ward.
“On the ventilator for 52 days after the liver transplant surgery in the ICU, there were three times his heart stopped and he stopped breathing. He overcame all this and transferred from ICU to the regular ward in a stable situation.”
On June 6, Reese was able to leave the hospital and go to New Day Foster Home. But, sadly, on October 2nd he passed away. Although Reese was getting stronger, he suddenly had trouble breathing and was rushed to the hospital where doctor’s tried to save his life.
After Ashley found out the devastating news she wrote, “I will not be discouraged in my mission to introduce people to New Day Foster Home and the precious lives they touch every day. Will you join me in re-committing to this beautiful cause? Through your giving, New Day Foster Home will be able to accept more babies, giving them a chance at life.”
Ashley concluded, “Every single life, no matter how short or long, is a precious gift. Because Reese’s life intertwined with mine and now yours, we have the opportunity to save other abandoned babies in China. I’m not giving up, and I hope you won’t either.”
Each year,13 million babies are aborted in China and special needs children are often abandoned. This makes the life-saving work of homes like New Day critical to the pro-life cause. You can give to New Day Foster Home by clicking this link!