Miracle baby’s family grateful to local folks who contributed to her care

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 2, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

&uot;Every day of our lives now we get to wake up and look at a real miracle from God,&uot; said Brian Cain. &uot;Hannah is now 15 months old and she has come a long, long way from the time when they told us she wouldn’t last three days.&uot;

Hannah Amelia Cain is now a beautiful and lively little girl well on the road to a &uot;normal&uot; life and her mother and dad, Brian and Gina Cain, feel they owe the citizens of Suffolk a great deal.


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When Hannah was born July 19, 2002, she suffered from multiple physical abnormalities including a cleft lip and both kidneys were on the left side of her tiny body. She was without female organs and she had intestinal abnormalities and a spinal disorder as well.

&uot;Doctors didn’t give us much hope for our baby,&uot; said Gina Cain. &uot;When she was born, they started CPR immediately because she was absolutely blue and without vital signs. They told us not to get attached to her and they took her to King’s Daughters and I left the hospital six hours after she was born. I truly did not think she would make it, and Brian and I were both devastated.&uot;

One of Hannah’s pediatricians advised the Cains about Dr. Alberto Pina of Schneider’s Children’s Hospital in Long Island, New York. Gina Cain burnt up the Internet checking on the doctor and the hospital.

As the teaching hospital for the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, a staff of specialists in all aspects of pediatric care provides medical, surgical, psychiatric and dental care for patients, from the smallest premature babies up to young adults.

The staff at Schneider’s strongly believes that parents and siblings are among the most important members of the health-care team because of the care and support only they can provide. The family is at the center of a child’s treatment program.

&uot;After speaking with the surgeon here, I requested that Dr. Pina be the surgeon because of all the birth abnormalities,&uot; said Gina. &uot;Dr. Pina is the only doctor who said he could do the surgery and that she wouldn’t have to have the colostomy bag. That would have been a whole other set of problems. She suffered from Vater Syndrome, which stands for problems with the vertebrae, anus, tracheal, esophageal, and renal function.&uot;

Through the generous contributions from people who read in the News-Herald of Hannah’s plight, she and her parents were able to make the trip to New York.

&uot;We want the people who contributed to the Hannah Cain Fund to know that we are so grateful for their help and support. The Suffolk Ruritans – I contacted Jimmy Franks about Hannah’s predicament – and that organization really came through for us. I can’t say enough about the Suffolk Ruritans. They told me that the funds came from their annual Shrimp Feast, and I would like to encourage everyone to buy Shrimp Feast tickets next fall so they can continue to help people in this community.&uot;

Hannah’s mom can barely keep up with the feisty little girl now that she’s had surgery to correct spine problems that would have kept her from walking. Within the last two weeks, she’s found out that legs and feet can take her to the far corners of her home.

&uot;She likes to help Brianna, our kindergartner, with her homework,&uot; said Brian. &uot;She crawls up into Bree-Bree’s lap to write, if you can imagine that. She also drags out all the pots and pans so that she can accompany Gina’s meal preparations with lots of music from the pans.&uot;

Hannah has learned how to operate the TV remote and she’s forever calling all her friends at the Children’s Hospital now that she’s discovered the phone, said a proud father.

Gina Cain said she is so thankful for the help the family received from donors to the Hannah Fund.

&uot;No one will ever know just how many tears Brian and I shed over all the envelopes we received from those who wished Hannah well and sent checks to the fund,&uot; said Gina Cain. &uot;Hannah may never meet the people who have helped her but we surely will tell her how much she is loved. We saved all the envelopes and cards to show to her when she’s older.&uot;

Older is a precious word in the Cain household. Hannah is thriving having defied all odds and doctor’s predictions.

&uot;I think that all the contributions were certainly helpful in Hannah’s victory, but I am positive that all the prayers for her – some from across the country – were instrumental in her recovery. For that; we are extremely grateful to God.&uot;

Hannah isn’t out of the woods yet. She still must undergo more surgery and at this time, she is scheduled to return to New York for follow up on the surgery.

&uot;We leave for New York right before Thanksgiving, and believe me; we know we are certainly blessed and have so much to be thankful for,&uot; said Brian Cain.

It will again cost the family to travel to New York and they have little money to spare beyond what they receive for Brian Cain’s disability checks. With three children to rear, it is almost impossible to save for the trip and Gina Cain cannot work because her daughter’s health needs prevent her leaving the home for more than a couple of hours.

If anyone would like to contribute toward the Hannah Cain Fund, they may do so by making checks payable to the Hannah Amelia Cain Fund, 458 Clover Lane, Suffolk, Va., 23434.