2015 Honorary Patient

Grace 1_300.jpg Grace, almost 2

In the spring of 2013, Laura and Rob Mello learned they were pregnant with their first child, who was due to arrive on December 15. On October 10, Grace Betty Mello arrived 10 weeks early, weighing only 2 pounds, 12 ounces. She was immediately rushed to the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).

Grace struggled to breathe and was intubated (given a breathing tube) and placed on a ventilator (a machine to help her breathe. The following day, she was taken to Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego. Laura and Rob were relieved, as they knew there was no better place to care for their baby.

For the next three days, Rob stayed with Grace 24 hours a day. When Laura came to the NICU, she saw her baby in a Giraffe isolette, which is used for premature babies. It was keeping Grace safe, warm and alive.

For the next 45 days, Laura spent every day with Grace in the NICU. She remembers the first time she got to hold her— the staff put little Grace on her chest. This skin-on-skin time, called kangaroo care, helps moms and their babies bond.

Finally, on the Monday before Thanksgiving, Grace was strong enough to go home, even though she weighed only 4.5 pounds.

Today, at almost 2 years old, Grace is a happy and healthy little girl. Laura and Rob attribute her well-being not only to the excellent medical care and advanced technology at Rady Children’s, but to the nurses who loved her as if she were their own.

When you support Rady Children’s, you help children whom you may never meet but whose lives have been saved through your investment in our Hospital.