Family pays it forward following help from March of Dimes

by: Erica Bryant Updated:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Tom and Laura Parrott treasure special moments with their three healthy children, but years ago they had a difficult time starting their family.

“I think all moms are proud of their kids,” Laura Parrott said. “I feel like I'm even prouder because I know what they had to overcome to get to where they are.”

She said Natalie, Stephen, and Anna were born premature – weeks before their due dates -- and spent time in the NICU.

“We were just really nervous,” Tom Parrotte said. “Just didn't know what to expect and had a ton of questions and not a whole lot of time to really ask them.”

They learned that seven of 100 babies are born premature despite the absence of any complications.

Laura Parrott experienced vasa previa, a malfunction of the umbilical cord, while she was pregnant with Anna -- the youngest of the three.

Research from the March of Dimes hospital staff was well equipped to help the premature babies survive.

“And that provides those medical advances that babies rely on to be healthy when they're in tough situations in the NICU, without families even knowing it,” Tom Parrott said.

Now, they reach out to other new parents encouraging them in trying times with the knowledge that there is an agency always working to ensure that every baby has a fighting chance.

“That's what you're supporting by supporting the March of Dimes,” Laura Parrott said. “It's support for people going through it right now, but more importantly, helping people to never get there.”

The fundraiser for the March of Dimes, the Signature Chefs Auction, will be on Saturday at the Charlotte Marriot Center City Saturday.

Eyewitness News anchor Blane Tollison is hosting the event.

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