MaryBess Gordon regularly takes time to sit on the bench her family donated at Carle’s Shining Light Infant Memorial Garden to reflect and remember little Maggie, who was stillborn at 36 weeks after an umbilical cord incident.

“It was just one of those unfair things,” MaryBess said. “We had such great care at that time and we are trying to do our part to help other families.”

The Gordon family, which now includes 6-month-old rainbow twins Annie and Owen, will join many other families from 7 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 15 during The Shining Light Memorial for Pregnancy and Infant Loss event held at the garden and livestreamed this year for families wanting to privately remember a pregnancy loss – miscarriage, stillbirth or infant.

The free event allows families to participate in person with anyone over the age of 2 wearing protective face coverings at the garden. Thanks to a free link, those unable to wear a mask may also participate virtually. Speakers will be Laura and Patrick Wolff, parents who experienced loss and sponsored a bereavement/consultation room in the neonatal intensive care unit at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana.

To view the ceremony virtually or register to have your baby’s name read during the ceremony Thanks to generous support from the Carle Center for Philanthropy, this event remains free and open to all.

Visitors to the Shining Light Infant Memorial Garden will find the garden beautifully decorated during the week of Oct. 11. The garden is visible from W. Church Street near Park Street. Visitors may park in the north parking garage near the hospital.

“In a time when we have felt especially isolated in our grief, this event is an important time to come together to remember the babies we’ve lost. It is open to anyone who is grieving the loss of a baby or a pregnancy, in any stage of their grief,” Rachel Campbell, RN, Labor and Delivery and perinatal grief and bereavement liaison at Carle, said.

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