Thank you for supporting healthy beginnings

On June 22, Mariah Caro and her husband, Cecil Knight, rushed to the emergency department of their local Centralia hospital. She had developed an infection in her placenta, forcing her into premature labor. Mariah and Cecil welcomed their son, William, that same morning – 15 weeks early.  

“What was supposed to be just another Saturday was the day we met our son,” Mariah says. “He weighed less than 2 pounds.”  

Because of his fragile state as a micro preemie, the MultiCare Tacoma General Neonatal Transport team was contacted to take William directly to the Tacoma General Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

The Tacoma General NICU is nationally accredited in neonatal transport services and provides transport for more than 700 premature infants each year, from 21 different hospitals in nine counties.

While at Tacoma General, William received visits from occupational, speech and physical therapists. He also benefited from music therapy, a service funded through generous community donations that helps premature babies process sound and physical touch. 

Traveling back and forth from Centralia to Tacoma to spend time with William quickly became impossible for the Knight family, so they found a temporary new home at Tree House: A Place for Families. Tree House offers private spaces for families to rest, do laundry, make a meal and more — all just steps from their loved one in the hospital. Thanks to community support, it’s offered at little to no cost to families.

On October 19, 119 days after he was born and two weeks after his original due date, William graduated from the NICU. 

“You never know when you are going to need something like this,” Mariah says. “You don’t want to need it, but if you ever do, you are forever grateful.”

Learn how you can help support healthy beginnings by donating to the MultiCare Tacoma General NICU.