We all long for it. This month, as love fills the air and our shopping carts, we wanted to share stories of unconditional love surrounding those we serve at The Abortion Survivors Network.
Although we’ve found that the majority of abortion survivors are raised in their biological family after an abortion attempt fails, there are also many abortion survivors who are adopted.
Most stories of abortion survivors are never told (we’re working to change that with those who do want their stories shared). Many stories of abortion survivors are forgotten over time.
We want to honor our fellow abortion survivors who we never forget by sharing their stories. We hope you share them, too. Their life mattered, no matter how long they continued to live after an abortion attempt.
Here’s a beautiful, yet heartbreaking story from Kansas about #urvivor, Sarah Brown.
Sarah was born on July 15, 1993, in Wichita, Kansas. She had survived a late term abortion attempt on her 15 year old mother. The infant’s mother had been brought nine hundred miles by her parents, to the office of George Tiller, infamous late term abortionist of Wichita, Kansas.
The partial-birth abortion procedure was not yet in vogue. Sarah, as she was later named by her adoptive parents, was already positioned in the womb to be born. The abortionist injected the baby’s head, in two places, the left side of her forehead above the eyebrow and at the base of the skull, with potassium Chloride, leaving permanent burn marks and needle track scars. The pregnant 15 year old left the office with the admonition to return the next day for the completion of the abortion.
Much to everyone’s dismay, the baby had not died in the intervening hours, but was still alive. The 15 year old was sent to the local hospital where the baby was eventually born. The delivery room staff, familiar with handling Tiller’s mistakes, wrapped up the baby, set her in a bassinet and left her without attendance. The 15 year old girl and her parents went home.
Twenty-four hours later though she had not been cleaned up, the umbilical cord had been improperly severed and she had had no nourishment, Sarah continued to live. A nurse in the newborn unit of the hospital finally took pity on the child. She called an attorney with whom she was familiar and explained the situation. The attorney called Bill and Mary Kay Brown and asked them to come to the hospital and rescue this remarkable child.
Though hospital staff predicted that the baby would not survive more than 8 weeks, Bill and Mary Kay and their seven children took Sarah home, adopted her and loved her till the day she died of kidney failure, at age five. If she had received attention during that 24 hour period, some of the effects of the brain damage might have been lessened. Only when the Brown’s filed for adoption was the child issued a birth certificate.
The potassium Chloride destroyed the left portion of Sarah’s brain leaving her blind, unable to walk and totally dependent upon the love and care of others. She required 15 different types of medication, two and three times a day, to synthetically replace what had been destroyed. Bill and Mary Kay took turns, even through the night, repositioning Sarah in her bed so that she never got bed sores. She required an apnea monitor and a heart and lung machine recording her oxygen levels. Because of the damage to her brain her physical growth was impaired. At age five she weighed 25 lbs and was the size of a two year old.
The Browns insurance company refused to include Sarah in the family’s coverge. She was provided with health care coverage by Bill Brown’s company, but at age 4, removed from coverage when her medical expenses became to costly. Mary Kay claims that it was, once again, the pro life community and local, private agencies who provided the most financial and compassionate support.
Sarah had two funeral services, one in the Southern Baptist church of her father, Bill Brown, and the second in the Catholic church of her mother, Mary Kay, presided over by Wichita Bishop, Eugene Gerber. Between the two services eight hundred people attended Sarah’s funeral.
Mary Kay claims that the hardest part of caring for Sarah was the verbal abuse the family endured from strangers. From, as she put it, other pro death people. The Browns moved from Wichita to Valleycenter, a rural farming community, because of a particularly ugly encounter with someone claiming that the Browns had done Sarah an injustice allowing her to live.
This is what unconditional love looks like. We are grateful for your strength in sharing Sarah’s story, and being an example to us all, Brown family.