Hurley mom helping other grieving parents heal - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Hurley mom helping other grieving parents heal

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"Our Gulf Coast Angels" will give every mother who loses a baby a basket in the hospital with a baby blanket, camera, teddy bear, foot printing material, along with baby wash and lotion. "Our Gulf Coast Angels" will give every mother who loses a baby a basket in the hospital with a baby blanket, camera, teddy bear, foot printing material, along with baby wash and lotion.
PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) -

It is the most devastating thing any parent could ever imagine: the loss of a child. A South Mississippi family who experienced such a tragedy this past April is now reaching out to help other families going through that same pain. 

"Our Gulf Coast Angels" Founder Amanda Rivera shares her very personal story with us in hopes of helping others. 

Rivera and her husband went to the hospital one joyful morning to deliver their son, Jaqnal Alexander, but there was no heartbeat.

"To know that I went through my whole pregnancy for it to end the way it did, it was just, it was the hardest thing I've ever had to do," she said with tear filled eyes.

An autopsy never even revealed why this perfect baby died in utero. She felt him kick the night before her scheduled c-section. 

"This hurt me more than anything in my life." 

The hole it left she said was consuming her, so she searched for help to try and cope. 

"Something just kept telling me research this, research it more and I found out on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Alabama and Louisiana Gulf Coast, we don't have anything for pregnancy and infant loss awareness or support." 

So this young mother of four boys from Hurley created "Our Gulf Coast Angels," the first group of its kind in our region. 

"So it just hit me, 'Start it.' You know, he's not here, but you can honor him in that way." 

Her group will give every mother who loses a baby a basket in the hospital with a baby blanket, camera, teddy bear, foot printing material, along with baby wash and lotion. 

"So they can give them their first and last baths, cause I didn't get that chance. I would have loved to have given him his first and last bath." 

Along with the memory baskets and emotional support, "Our Gulf Coast Angels" also keeps a list of the babies who have died on their Facebook page and will hold a walk each year to honor them and help their grieving parents heal. Their first walk was this past Saturday in Pascagoula, a big step to bring infant loss awareness and support to the Gulf Coast. 

"It makes me happy that I am helping other moms, you know, because there wasn't someone to help me."

You can join them on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/OurGulfCoastAngels

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