Today we Honor the Little Lives that Departed Too Soon

October 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, a day meant to show support, educate, and create awareness for those who are suffering or may know someone who has suffered a miscarriage, a still birth, or the loss of an infant.

This evening we will remember and celebrate the little lives who were gone too soon. Join us at Community Medical Center in Missoula at 6:45 pm in the hospital cafeteria courtyard. If desired, bring a photo or momento. Children are welcome.

“When a child loses a parent they are called an orphan. When a spouse loses their partner they are widowed. When parents lose their child there is no word to describe them…simply that they are still parents.” – President Ronald Reagan

The Browne Family shares their story so others know they are not alone.

Community Children’s at Community Medical Center in Missoula completely embodied the definition of “community” – a feeling of fellowship with others – in the care they provided to our family during our NICU stay and even afterwards.

Our 3rd child, Lachlan, was born at 32-weeks gestation. What was meant to be a routine prenatal appointment with our midwife in Helena, MT quickly turned into being transferred to Missoula’s Community Medical Center and Dr. Faussett’s care. My husband was in Romania with the Montana National Guard for training during this time. The nurses, social workers and medical professionals helped to calm my nerves and would occasionally participate in watching the Summer Olympics with me and cheering for team USA! Community supported us in activating the Red Cross to get Jason, my husband, quickly flown back to Montana so he could be present for Lachlan’s birth

Lachlan proved to be a medical mystery with many obstacles to overcome in his little 3 lb body. An MRI uncovered brain damage prior to his birth, when Lachlan suffered a tremendous loss of amniotic fluid – suggesting cerebral palsy might be in his future. During his 52-day stay in the Community Children’s NICU we were able to live at the Ronald McDonald House. The social workers at Community helped us to secure this housing and would often check in on us to see if we were needing anything else. Dr. Faussett would occasionally wander into our son’s room just to check on him and us. The nurses encouraged us to pick a theme and decorate Lachlan’s room, giving it more of a personalized and homey feel. We incorporated mountains and Montana animals into this theme which is why the Mountain Goat has manifested into Lachlan’s spirit animal. In a matter days the NICU doctor’s and nursing staff became our family.

Within the first 12-hours of trying to grapple with life without our baby boy, we received a call from the NICU doctors at Community Children’s and Dr. Faussett. They expressed their sympathy and cried with us as we all reminisced about Lachlan. Community Children’s went above and beyond the scope of their professional duties to ensure that our family was not forgotten about and most importantly that our little warrior, Lachlan Duncan Browne, was not forgotten about.

We intend to make an annual pilgrimage to the Missoula Valley each August, soaking up the town that our son was born in. This visit allows us to stop in and personally thank the medical professionals at Community Children’s that continue to work tirelessly to support families and babies who are fighting for life.

Ashley & Jason Browne
Parents of Fischer, Harlow & Lachlan

If you or someone you know has experienced the lost of a pregnancy or infant, there is a local support group in Missoula – Gone Too Soon (406) 241-9537.