One of the hardest things as a parent is seeing our kids get sick. As much as we wish we could take away any discomfort or pain from our innocent children, it’s just not humanly possible. The only thing we have in our power is to care for them as best as we can and take them to get the medical attention they need if necessary.
When an Iowa couple, Paul and Meagan, noticed that their 12-month-old baby girl, Coralynn “Cora” Eve Sobolik, began to have respiratory problems, they rushed her to the hospital. Little Cora had contracted parainfluenza, quickly going from a healthy infant to a very sickly child. Due to how serious her virus had become, the hospital transferred her to Mayo Clinic Hospital in Rochester, Minnesota. However, on the way to her destination, her heart suddenly stopped.
The medical staff accompanying Cora gave her CPR for 25 minutes. Paul, Meagan, and Coralynn’s grandmother all watched the alarming scene. Eventually, Cora was revived and had tests done which showed her heart was healthy, but a CAT scan revealed that she had suffered from brain damage from not receiving blood for so long.
Although she was under the hands of experienced hospital staff, Cora was worse by nightfall and even in more critical condition the next day. The prognosis was not looking good. Then Meagan and Paul were told on Sunday, April 21, 2019, at 4:45 p.m. that their sweet baby girl had passed.
“I dropped to my knees and cried and kept saying, ‘No, no, no, God, no.’ I then felt numb and felt empty,” the mom said.
Although the couple was in utter shock about their baby’s quick and tragic dismissal from the earth, they knew Cora was in a better place.
While there is nothing happy about an innocent baby passing away, there was a silver lining in Cora’s passing: She would have her organs donated to save the lives of others.
“There is now no chance of our little girl recovering but she is still with us and is in the process of organ donation. She became an angel today but tomorrow morning or tomorrow afternoon she will go into surgery and become a superhero and give the wonderful gift of life to up to eight different people that are in desperate need of these organs. We have tonight to be with Cora and will give her the most love we have ever given her yet.”
Due to how difficult a situation like Paul and Meagan’s was to go through, the hospital staff made sure to go the extra mile to show their respect and sympathy for Cora’s loss and her parents’ grief.
In fact, as Coralynn was wheeled down the hall after her passing, the hospital staff sang “Amazing Grace,” which was a gesture that meant so much to Cora’s family.
“I was speechless, and it was truly wonderful to see and feel so much love and support for our little girl. The doctor that took care of her came in on his day off to the be the first in line and also the last one to be with us when they shut the elevator doors to take her to surgery. The nursing staff was amazing to us … They gave us so much comfort and support while we were there, it was amazing.”
Nobody will ever replace Baby Coralynn who “loved bubbles and being outside with her brother and sister,” but the family was grateful that their daughter would live on through the lives of others.
“She is going to be living on within three different people. She isn’t really gone, she lives on in her legacy.”
Cora’s liver went to a one-year-old girl, her heart went to a one-year-old boy, and her kidneys were given to a 41-year-old woman.
The parents hope that Coralynn’s organ donation will inspire other families to do the same.
“Our daughter was absolutely the world to us. She was such a happy little girl and always laughing — her laugh was infectious. Cora is our little superhero, and I believe is becoming an inspiration for millions of people and also helping to raise awareness for organ donation all over the world.”
You can listen to the hospital staff sing in the video below. Although it’s a tough and emotionally raw video to watch, it’s also a beautiful and respectful moment.