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Utah family donates 'Cuddle Cots' to grieving families of stillborn children

Posted at 10:11 PM, Sep 27, 2020

OGDEN, Utah — A local family is turning the pain of giving birth to a stillborn baby into an act of kindness for others who experience this tremendous loss.

In February, Jessica Kradel gave birth to a stillborn baby boy.

The family named the child Henry John.

“We speak his name often in our house. Our two boys know he’s their brother and even though he’s not here, he’s part of our family,” Jessica said.

Following the stillbirth, Jessica, her husband and two children had very little time to say goodbye.

“I think it’s important that families have time because once you hand your baby off, that’s all the time you’ll have,” Jessica said.

A device called a ‘Cuddle Cot’ gives families experiencing this loss precious extra hours to spend with the baby.

“A Cuddle Cot can keep your baby cool and you can keep them in the room with you. Then you don’t have to send them to the morgue overnight like we did with Henry,” Jessica said.

At the time of Henry John’s stillbirth, Ogden Regional Medical Center did not have a Cuddle Cot.

Jessica and her family started a Facebook page to raise money with the hopes of purchasing the device for Ogden Regional.

They collected more than $4,000 in donations.

Wednesday, they delivered the Cuddle Cot to the hospital.

“Today is hard because it’s another ending to our journey,” Jessica said. “We were so excited that we were able to get the cot. Then it was like, another wave of grief came over us. OK, now what? How can we keep his memory alive?”

This donation to Ogden Regional is keeping Henry John’s memory alive.

Jessica hopes every hospital in Utah can eventually acquire a Cuddle Cot to help families find comfort and healing during a time of intense grief.

“There are families every single day to benefit from having a Cuddle Cot,” Jessica said.