Come celebrate the Forever Kelton Warrior Weekend
Tue, 27 May 2014 14:33:53 GMT —
Parents always learn something from their kids. They just might not realize it until later.
When a parent only has eight days to spend with their child, they can learn a whole lot.
That's what Chris and Stephanie Peter found out two years ago.
"I was seven months pregnant, and she said, "mom, what are you going to do if Kelton dies?'" Stephanie Peter said.
"She" is Stephanie Fleer Peter's oldest daughter Victoria, who was just eleven at the time. Stephanie was a little upset by the comment because she had had a perfect pregnancy.
"He was supposed to be a-OK," Stephanie Peter said.
Stephanie started going into labor at 37 weeks. Victoria drew a poster that said Forever Kelton and she couldn't wait to show her baby brother. Shortly after he was born via C-section, Kelton stopped breathing. He was put on a ventilator and sent to St. Louis Children's Hospital NICU.
Genetic testing showed Kelton had a rare condition called Trisomy 13.
"He had an extra 13th chromosome in every cell of his body. So instead of 46, which is normal human chomrosomes, he had 47," Kelton's dad, Chris Peter said.
Trisomy 13 is usually fatal within the first year of life, so the Peters made the decision to take their son off life support when he was just eight days old.
Two days before Kelton passed away, the Peter family got to meet, hold, and say goodbye to him. Victoria, age 11, brought her Forever Kelton poster to the NICU.
"In the process of getting to the hospital, she found a five dollar bill. She kept it and put it in her pocket. She came to me and said, "Mom, I want to do something. Let's start something for Kelton." And she showed me the money," Stephanie Peter said.
The family began to think of what they could do and what they could call it.
"She looked at her poster, and said that's it. Forever Kelton," Stephanie Peter said.
Both Chris and Stephanie knew forever was a great slogan for Kelton's memory.
"He was a blessing," Chris Peter said.
"You got him for eight days, but yet there's a bigger, bigger reason," Stephanie Peter said.
"You can't do anything about it. It is what it is, now make the most of it," Chris Peter said.
The Forever Kelton Warrior Weekend raises money for research.
"I really don't want to see another baby go through what I had to watch Kelton go through. As a loving mother, I don't ever want to see another parent go through what I had to go through," says Stephanie.
Instead, the family celebrates the life of their little man. His life was only eight days, but his impact is forever.
"Come celebrate with us," Chris Peter said.
The Forever Kelton Warrior weekend runs Friday, May 30 through Sunday, June 1.
Last year this event raised more than $17,000 for research at St. Louis Children's Hospital.
You can find signup information and more here.