DEARBORN — Patients and family members spending time in the hospital this holiday season have a little something to brighten their days. Donations from a local family, Beaumont employees and the American Legion are being put to good use.
Kyle Adkins and his wife, Amy, spent their Christmas in the Beaumont Hospital – Dearborn Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Their baby, Grayson, was born several weeks early and he was breech. Adkins, of Trenton, said he was pleasantly surprised to receive a care package in the form of a Christmas stocking.
For the second year in a row, Kristina and Tony Trupiano of Flat Rock donated stockings filled with items for the parents of NICU babies. Their goal is to help parents pass the time with basic convenience items, gift cards, food and coffee vouchers, snacks and books.
The Trupianos spent nearly three months in the NICU with their now 2-year-old twins, Benjamin and William. In lieu of birthday gifts for the mid-December babies, the couple asked friends and family to instead donate items to fill the stockings.
“It touches my heart to see these babies and their parents in the NICU at Christmas time,” Kristina Trupiano said. “I know what it’s like to be there and I can’t help but get emotional when I get to see and talk to them during our visit.”
The NICU and the mother-baby unit also were recipients of a significant donation from the local American Legion post. The organization provided funding for the purchase of a Kangaroo Chair to help mother’s provide skin-to-skin contact for preterm infants in the most comfortable way possible. The contact is said to help improve stability, offer better breast-feeding and could result in an earlier discharge home.
Another effort to bring joy to patients was initiated by Beaumont – Dearborn Police Authority Officer Michelle Garland. Every year for the past seven years, Garland has distributed about 500 teddy bears to patients throughout the hospital. She said she was inspired by a family member who was hospitalized many years ago and hoped to spread Christmas time cheer to as many patients as she could.
“It’s so rewarding to help patients feel special at the holidays,” Garland said. “I’ve been doing this for seven years and I hope to continue for many more years to come.”