ERIC FREIN CAPTURED

ERIC FREIN CAPTURED

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Born 13oz, warrior preemie is beating the odds

Reported by: Donna Kirker-Morgan
Contributor: Lea Jolan (LJWilson@SBGTV.com)
 
This Memorial Day there's a story of a different kind of warrior-- little Gannon Kupko who has been fighting for his life since he was born 12 weeks premature.  He weighed just 13 ounces and measuring only 10 inches long at birth.

When he was born, his daddy's wedding ring could slide right up his arm.

Jennifer and Gannon Kupko of York Haven fought to become parents with the use of in vitro fertilization. The didn't know it but their battle was just beginning.  Every day is now a victory for their baby who's truly earned the nick name Warrior Gannon.

His mother, Jennifer says it was definitely scary when doctors at York Hospital told her that her son must be delivered 12 weeks early. She says they never got any reassurances Gannon would survive.

"They still wont' give us odds to this day," she said.

"We've been fighting odds since he started falling behind," Gannon Sr. said.

Warrior Gannon was willing to charge up every hill he faced -- right from the beginning.

Jennifer says he is a fighter, "they say when he came out he was throwing his arm legs and that is good trait for preemies to have."

Born December 11, Gannon surprised doctors and made it to Christmas. Then got his first hug from his mom at day 38.

She says that was a very special day.  "You wanted to cry but can't show stress because he will feel it."

Gannon hit nearly six pounds by St Patty's day and seven pounds by Easter.

His parents say it never would have happened if so many people weren't praying for him.  Jennifer says prayer chains have gone as far as England for her baby. A young Harrisburg girl ran a 5K in his name.  A church has been providing meals at home, while the Ronald McDonald House has been providing meals at Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital.

Little Gannon was moved to specialized care in April.  Jennifer quit her job and is learning to clean and care for his trach -- the tube that provides him oxygen through his throat.  Once she completes that training, the Kupkos hope to take their little warrior home for some peace and quiet.
 
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