Children Survive Trisomy 18, They Should Not be Killed in Abortions

Trisomy 18 returned to the headlines recently as a pregnant Texas woman with a child, who was living with Trisomy 18, fought in the courts to get an abortion. Fortunately, the Texas Supreme Court ruled against abortion, but sadly Kate Cox traveled out of state to end her baby’s life.

Contrary to most of what you read in the media; Trisomy 18 (T-18) is not an automatic death sentence. It is true that most babies with this condition do not survive, but we are aware of more and more children who do – some into adulthood. The longevity of individuals with T-18 has attracted the attention of the research world. A case report is published in the National Library of Medicine.

I first became familiar with T-18 shortly after her birth in 2011 when we featured Lillianna Dennis and her family in a episode of our weekly TV program, Facing Life Head-On. Early on his parents had to fight for the critical heart surgery needed to save his life. Never underestimate the tenacity of a “mother bear” fighting for her cubs.

Recently, Lilliana, with the help of a walker, walked to his church for the first time when he was nine years old.

Megan Hayes at 40 in 2020 is the second oldest man in the world with T-18 to live. Our staff has not been able to find any information about him since then.

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Donald R Heaton lived to the age of 22 despite doctors’ predictions of months and was aware of his surroundings and interactions. In his 2015 online obituary two posts show that Donald is not alone in living with T-18.

  • Vanessa Ward writes about her 25-year-old daughter and a beloved family member.
  • Toni Barnes proudly posted about her grandson, age unknown.

Bella Santorum is known to many of us in the pro-life movement. She is the daughter of former Pennsylvania senator and presidential candidate, Rick Santorum, and his wife, Karen. An article shows loving parents celebrating Bella’s 12th birthday When Bella was born, their daughter was labeled “incompatible with life.” He is 15 now.

Contrary to the expectations of the doctors that Elaine Fagan will live only days, she lived for 25 years. His obituary states that, “he created a great bond among his family, friends and anyone who knew or knew him.”

When Jennifer Holyrod gave birth Amber with T-18, he said that at first it was “like Amber was fired” because the odds were against her continuing to live. But despite aggressive medical intervention, Amber and he did not give up started school this year.

Kayden “the HOPE” has a strong Face Book presence and now 22. If in doubt check out his FB page. Looks like he has a real one delicious forever.

There are similar threads running through each of these wonderful lives. Children and adults are consistently happy, have much more mental awareness than many in and out of the medical community give them credit for, and have a positive impact on those around them.

They face truly difficult health issues, and because of these medical realities their families accept each day as a gift. But when asked, they are quick to say that it was all worth it.

LifeNews.com Note: Bradley Mattes is the executive director of Life Issues Institute.

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