A Sad Addendum to That "Smallest Baby" Story

Sometimes the news is so painful, you just don’t want to know.

A few days ago, I wrote about tiny Melinda Star Guido who, at four months old, is finally healthy enough to go home for the holidays.  Melinda weighed only 9 ½ ounces at birth, and doctors really didn’t expect her to survive.  She was a fighter, though, and after successful treatment for an eye condition and surgery to repair an artery, Melinda faces a bright future. 

But today I read about another tiny child, Joseph Bradbury.  Joseph, who was born at 23 weeks, was a little bigger than Melinda—he weighed 1 lb. 6 oz. at birth.

Joseph’s parents, Scott and Sarah Bradbury, had been trying to start a family for ten years; but Sarah was facing a medical condition, and every time she became pregnant, she miscarried.  In fact, Sarah suffered eight miscarriages before giving birth to her “miracle baby boy” in August.

Beating the odds, baby Joseph has thrived in the care of his loving parents. 

But now the bad news Scott and Sarah live in Portland, near the English Channel in the county of Dorset, in the United Kingdom.  Last week they attended an Advent reconciliation service at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Weymouth, intending to go to confession before the Christmas holiday. 

Talking about his wife later, Scott reported, “Just as she went into confession she gave me a cheeky smile.”  Sarah walked into the confessional alone; but as she was telling Father Stephen Geddes how well her premature baby Joseph was doing, she began to feel ill and collapsed.  A doctor who was present for the penitential service tried to resuscitate her until paramedics arrived; but Sarah died in the hospital from an undiagnosed gastro-intestinal bleed.

Little Joseph, the miracle baby, made Sarah very happy in his short life—but now, he and his father Scott face life without Sarah.  “All Sarah wanted to do,” said Scott, “was to become a mother.”    

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and may perpetual light shine upon her.  May her soul, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace.  Amen.

For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways
And My thoughts than your thoughts.

–Isaiah 55:8-9


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