This is a story about rainbows after storms.
That’s how two Upstate mothers who’ve experienced infant loss are describing a very special announcement.
Kerri gray lost her baby, Jackson, in late 2013. Katherine martin lost her baby, Kellie Rynn, just 5 months later. They both died due to unsafe sleep at upstate daycares. It’s a fight they’ve championed for nearly two years. They’re making big strides and preparing for their lives to change.
“I feel their support and this is why we do this. We do this for our children,” said Katherine Martin.
Two years ago, Katherine martin became a mom. Three and half months later, her daughter that was full of smiles and promise was gone. Within weeks, Katherine earned a new title of advocate.
On a mission to make daycare safer in South Carolina, Martin also gained 3 new friends who founded “Kellie Rynn’s Voice” and joined the fight. One of those friends was Kerri Gray.
“I got her name. I sent her this long email and I just felt bad for her,” said Gray. “We were going through that process. So, for someone else to be going through what we went through, it was devastating.”
Katherine and Kerri bonded through shared grief and the will to fight. Now, they have yet another shared experience. They both are pregnant with baby number two.
“Kellie Rynn and Jackson kind of planned this for us to be pregnant at the same time together,” said Gray.
They news has them shocked, excited, and saddened all at once.
“I think you’re scared, too, because you’ve already been down that path once. You don’t want to go down it again,” said Gray.
To get through it, they rely on each other.
“Kerri and I, we can help each other through this,” explained Martin.
It turns out, there’s something in the water with the “Kellie Rynn’s Voice” crew.
“All of Kellie Rynn’s Voice is pregnant. Our friend Katie who has helped us, she just had her son last week. We have one due in February and April and May,” said Martin.
They also at work on their latest project, Kellie Rynn Academy. Right now, it is a day care concept designed to service lower to middle class families with low cost, yet highly efficient and educational care. They’ve got the building and now they’re working towards a fall 2017 opening.
In the meantime, they focus on their growing rainbow babies they call their beauty after a storm.
“We do this for other people’s children, but it started with our own. That’s what’s important,” said Martin.
Martin said 1 in 4 women experience infant loss. That’s more than breast cancer.
If you’d like to learn more about Kellie Rynn Academy or ways you can help, visit http://www.kellierynnacademy.com/