Giving News & Highlights

2 families join together to help others in their time of need

On Sept. 1, 2011, Ray Gregory Labat joined the proud parents, Adam and Erin Labat. Their first born, he had a smile that would light up a room. Just as he was starting to develop a personality, Ray passed away from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). He was 4 months, 10 days old.

On Nov. 4, 2009, another beautiful first-born son, Noah Joseph Rogers, came into this world. He was the love of Scott and Jenna's lives. At 11 months, he died from SIDS while taking a nap at daycare.

Ray Gregory Labat

Noah Joseph Rogers

During their time of grief, the last thing these families wanted to think about was money. Between funeral costs, head stones, flowers, and more, the bills added up quickly. It wasn’t something they planned for. No one does.

With the help of the Minnesota Sudden Infant Death Center and Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota, the Labat and Rogers families have created the Ray Labat/Noah Rogers Memorial Funeral Fund. This fund was created to help families who have been affected by SIDS to cover some of the funeral expenses.

These families know firsthand how difficult it can be losing a child. Not only are they honoring their children, but they’re helping other families in their time of need by allowing them to focus on what’s truly important, not on how much it’s all going to cost.

Both families have started their own fundraising events benefiting the memorial fund:

Hit the greens during Noah’s Memorial Classic on July 29 at the Medina Golf and Country Club.

Lace up your shoes for Ray’s Run on Sept. 14 around Rice Lake in Maple Grove.

In 2012, the Ray Labat/Noah Rogers Memorial Funeral Fund helped 11 families from across Minnesota – in memory of Ray and Noah.

Inspired by Ziggy’s care, his family plans to give back

Emily, along with her husband, Matt, rushed to Methodist Hospital when her water broke at 30 weeks and was told by her doctor that she was about to deliver a pre-term baby who would need to be taken by ambulance to Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in Minneapolis immediately after he was born. Wanting to be with their baby, the couple changed plans and rushed to Abbott Northwestern Hospital, across from Children’s, to deliver their son, Zigmond “Ziggy” Barbero.

barberobabyDuring labor, Emily received two steroid shots to help with fetal lung development and was visited by Children’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) nurses who told she and her husband what to expect after delivery.

“Great preparation,” the couple said.

The doctors and nurses armed them with the facts.

Ziggy was born weighing 3 pounds, 6 ounces. Matt, a property development executive with Target corporation, was thrilled and scared at the sight of his tiny infant son. Ziggy was immediately moved into Children’s special care nursery (SCN) on the seventh floor of Abbott where he was closely monitored.

Four days after Ziggy was born, the Barbero family learned that they were going to be one of 15 families moved over to the new Mother Baby Center when it opened. They were the first occupants of the generously sponsored C.H. Robinson SCN room. This was especially meaningful, as Emily is the director of internal communications at C.H. Robinson and has been involved in their partnership with Children’s.

barberofamilyjpgMoving their fragile child made them a bit nervous until they saw their beautiful new home, complete with a pull-out sofa for the parents to stay. They were able to remain with their precious Ziggy as he learned to feed, gain weight and grow stronger.

During their time at Children's, Emily and Matt were moved by the people and care that blessed their son’s life. Both parents look forward to exploring the corporate partnerships that their companies have with the hospital and want to continue being involved!

The 'Hoiness Miracles' return to Baby Steps

In July 2011, Kellie Hoiness was giddy over her upcoming 21-week doctor’s appointment. She and her husband, Marshall, would learn the gender of their twins. As first-time parents, each appointment was a milestone.

They learned they were having baby girls – and that their seemingly normal pregnancy was anything but. One of the twins – Khloe – had blood flow issues. She wasn’t growing properly.


Team Sophie

Micah and Jeff Commander were excited to add another to their growing brood, and even more excited to learn they were having twins. But midway through the pregnancy, they learned that one of the girls, Sophie, would be born with a rare congenital heart defect that, if left untreated, could lead to congestive heart failure, heart murmurs and abnormal heart rhythms.


A NICU family gives back

>It’s hard for me to describe what it has meant for me to be able to partner with Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota to raise money for their neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) over the past three years. But what I do know is that I owe 28 years of good health to all who cared for me when I was born. Unfortunately I never had a chance to personally know and thank the nurses and doctors who were able to successfully deliver me.