Changing Lives One Baby at a Time

You don’t have to be a certain age to change lives.

Jordan and James Frado’s son Calvin is a perfect example of that. Calvin was “born into heaven” on February 24, 2016 at 5:28 a.m. weighing 10 lbs., 1 oz., 20.5 inches long. The cause was meconium aspiration, which is when the baby’s meconium stool mixes with the amniotic fluid in the womb and is inhaled into the baby’s lungs shortly before, during, or after birth.

Calvin Frado's meconium aspiration story

It’s impossible to put into words the emotions that Jordan and James endured after Calvin’s death. Jordan speaks candidly about Calvin's meconium aspiration and that time in her life on her blog, calvinslove.blogspot.com.

“It’s been rough, but I have a lot of help,” said Jordan. “I remember sitting in this exact spot I am right now in the first month of Calvin being gone and thinking to myself, ‘I can’t wait until more time goes by and this gets easier.’ As I sit here today I’m able to say, it did get easier, though not as much as I’d hoped. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about him.”

Calvin’s Love Comes to Firelands

One of the ways Jordan and her family dealt with the pain of losing Calvin was honoring his memory. To Jordan and James, the way in which to honor their firstborn was to turn the tragedy into a triumph. Through his death, Calvin is impacting more people than many adults do throughout their entire lifetimes. One of those ways: Calvin reaches each and every baby born at Firelands Regional Medical Center.

The Frado's son, Calvin, died from meconium aspiration.James & Jordan Frado with daughter, Morley Rae

“We have been given so much love and support through our time of grief, that we want to share that same love and kindness in Calvin’s honor,” said Jordan. “Every child is a blessing from God and Bibles for Babies was laid on our hearts.”

Bibles for Babies is a non-profit program run by Jordan and her mother, Kim More, in which funds are raised to purchase Say & Pray Children’s Bibles, which are then donated to newborns, young children, and their families throughout Huron and Erie counties. Bibles have been given to area Salvation Army’s, food banks, churches, preschools, pregnancy centers, health centers, resource centers, and more. In August 2017, Bibles for Babies were donated to the Firelands Center for Women & Newborns.  Each baby born at the hospital receives a free bible on behalf of one tiny, mighty missionary: Calvin Frado.

“Of course, if the mother doesn’t wish to take the bible home, they aren’t forced to,” said Jordan. “Our goal was to get them into hospitals so that each newborn would go home with the Word of God. We hope to spread this ministry to other surrounding hospitals.”

Calvin has reached more than 2,800 people through bible donations.

“We want to reach as many children as possible,” said Jordan. “I get chills thinking about the moms and dads who are handed a free children’s bible – something they maybe never would have had or would ever buy for their child. Calvin is changing lives!”

The Firelands Center for Women and Newborns is just one place on a growing list where Bibles for Babies are accepted with open arms. If you wish to get involved in Calvin’s ministry, you have a few options:

  1. Donations: Bibles for Babies is run entirely on donations. Any amount will help as they will be used to purchase picture bibles for children. All donations are tax deductible, as Calvin’s Love is a 501(c) (3).
  2. Outreach: Help Jordan and her family spread the word about Calvin’s Love and the Bibles for Babies program. Keep a lookout for this story to be featured on Firelands Regional Medical Center’s social media channels, and share it with your friends and family.
  3. Prayers: “Prayers for our hearts to be open and eager to glorify God, man power for this to spread as deep and wide as it can go, and the funds to do so,” said Jordan.

Now more than two years later, Calvin not only lives on through Bibles for Babies and his family’s hearts, he is also a big brother in heaven to his sister Morley Rae, born July 1, 2017.

For more information about Calvin’s Love and how you can get involved, visit calvinslove.com or email info@biblesforbabies.com.

Angel Gowns for Firelands Babies

The Firelands Center for Women & Newborns has a special place in many peoples’ hearts. In another small but meaningful way, one volunteer is giving back to babies at the Center for Women and Newborns who, like Calvin, are “born into heaven” due to conditions like meconium aspiration or others.

Jan Lippus, a retiree who used to run playground duty at schools and loves to be around children, spends her time sewing “angel gowns” for stillborn babies. She has sewn more than 10 pieces which she has donated to Firelands – all of which are created using fabrics from wedding dresses, christening gowns, and bridesmaid dresses.

Lippus sews gowns of all sizes, fabrics and colors – some with lace and ribbons, others with simple white silk and buttons. And while the center hopes to not need any angel gowns, they typically need more of the smaller sizes than the larger ones.

The number of stillborn or miscarried babies at Firelands Regional Medical Center goes in spurts and can vary month-to-month, said Trisha Barth, unit coordinator at the Center for Women & Newborns. There’s no predicting how many angel gowns the center will use, but having them on hand is a welcome gift.

“Luckily we only see one or two full term stillborns per year,” said Barth. “Most of our need in terms of sizes are for smaller babies, those weighing around one pound - about the size of your hand.”

After birth, each deceased baby is dressed carefully in the angel gown, and then placed with delicate blankets, stuffed animals and mementos for photographs. The photos are offered to the parents and saved on file. Just like how new parents have the option of taking home one of Calvin’s bibles, parents can choose when/if they want to see the photos of their deceased baby.

“We have patients who take months, even years before they’re ready to see the photos,” said Barth. “And that’s completely okay. But when they’re ready, they can come back and we will have the photos for them. We strive to show moms compassion and do as much as we can to help them during such a heartbreaking time.”

Through the generous time and donations from volunteers like Jan Lippus, the Firelands Center for Women & Newborns has plenty of angel gowns on hand if needed. But there are other ways volunteers are used throughout the organization. If you have an interest in giving back to patients at Firelands Regional Medical Center, learn more about our open volunteer opportunities by visiting firelands.com/volunteer.