The Philadelphia couple decided to complete a bucket list of special ‘family’ moments with their unborn son, having been told he was not expected to live for more than a few hours or days once born.
The outpouring of love and support from our readers and followers across the world was overwhelming. No matter their opinion of the couple’s decision to keep their baby, knowing he had anencephaly – a serious birth defect, everyone hoped and prayed for a medical miracle.
According to the Facebook page, Prayers for Shane, the baby boy was born at 2.55am on Thursday this week.
“Shane Michael Haley … born at 2:25am … happy birthday to our little man!” the page read.
Sadly only a few short hours later the delighted parents were forced to say goodbye to their tiny son, the heartbreaking result of so many months spent together as a family.
In that time the parents decided to cross off one more item on the bucket list, a christening for Shane.
“Today at 6:15AM, after meeting his entire family and being baptised into the Catholic faith, baby Shane died peacefully in his Mother’s arms .. we are so grateful for the time that we were blessed to hold and hug our son .. the support and prayers we have received from all of you have been amazing and we want to thank each of you with all our hearts .. Shane spent his entire life in the arms of people that loved him unconditionally and I don’t think you could ask for a more beautiful life then that .. he is home now with the Lord and will forever be our little miracle!,” the parents said in a statement online.”
Jenna and Dan were thrilled when they learned they were expecting their first child.
“Growing up with so many younger brothers, I couldn’t wait to be a dad; I felt like a dad for most of my life, just to have my own would have been awesome,” Dan said.
Everything was normal up until 14 weeks into their pregnancy when the pair learned that Shane had anencephaly, a serious birth defect in which a baby is born without parts of the brain and skull.
“It was tough to hear, it was a shock,” Dan explained of the heartbreaking diagnosis, where babies typically only live for a few hours, maybe a few days, after birth.
“I told him ‘we’re going to carry him but he’s not going to make it,'” Jenna Haley proudly declared.
Like many other proud expectant parents, the couple chose to share their news on Facebook. They told their friends and family that they were the proud parents of a baby boy, that they named Shane, who only had months to live.
Jenna and Dan then had the idea to create a bucket list for their unborn son, to make the most of their time with him.
“He’s still our son. So while he’s with us, let’s show him all the love we can, let’s do everything we can with him, let’s make some memories with him because he’s still our little boy.”
One by one from a trip to New York, to picking pumpkins, a baseball game and a trip to the beach, the couple crossed off everything on their to-do list.
Shane’s story has inspired and touched people all around the world. the support the couple received during the time they anxiously awaited their baby boy’s arrival is perhaps the most endearing legacy for their son.
“Just to see the impact of Shane’s life, even though he hasn’t been born yet, he’s obviously made his mark already on the world and that’s pretty amazing. It’s a miracle in itself.”
RIP Baby Shane x