Against all odds

Janet Burry cannot give enough praise to the Bay St. George Sick Children's Foundation for what they did for her child almost five years ago.

Burry was not quite 24 weeks into her 40 weeks of pregnancy when she went into labour and had to be rushed to St. John's by air ambulance.

When she arrived at the hospital in St. John's, the doctors broke the news that there was only a 10% chance that the baby would survive and even if the baby did survive, there was only a 5% chance the baby would be normal and healthy.

Burry and her husband, Lyndon were looking at a long stay in St. John's. There was a hostel close to the hospital where people in just such a situation can stay. The Burry's decided that whatever the cost was, they would stay together through the ordeal.

Burry discovered that friends of theirs from the Bay St. George area were in St. John's for a similar reason, and they told her about the Bay St. George Sick Children's Foundation (BSGSCF). "When we went to check into the hostel, the guy behind the desk asked us how we would be paying for the stay," said Janet. "We told him we would be paying ourselves, and he said 'You're from the Bay St. George area? You don't have to worry about it there is a foundation that helps people from your area in this situation.'"

The man who was working at the hostel then called a gentleman by the name of Jack Cook, the president of the BSGSCF.

The BSGSCF paid for Lyndon to stay in the hostel, they also offered to pay for groceries and the expense of getting home when the whole ordeal was finally over.

The Burry's gladly accepted assistance with the cost of the hostel, but decided that was all they could take, they would find a way to make the rest of the money come together. They didn't want to take advantage knowing at that same time there were four other families in St. John's who were being helped by the Foundation.

"It's amazing to have a foundation that takes care of working people when special circumstances arise and they need help," said Burry. "I cannot praise them up enough, there just aren't words to describe what they did for us."

On June 21, 2001 a one pound six ounce baby girl was born to Janet and Lyndon Burry. They named her Jalyn, a combination of both of their names.

Even though she was less than a pound and a half when she was born, Jalyn lost weight. The first picture that was take of her was when she was being given last writes.

Although she had a rocky start, Jalyn persevered and somehow survived.

Unlike most premature babies, Jalyn was not released on the day she was originally due as she was still suffering complications of coming into the world 16 weeks early. The Burry's stay lasted for five months, all of which was paid for by the Bay St. George Sick Children's Foundation.

"It was a very stressful situation already and we were very fortunate not to have to worry about the expense to our family," said Burry. "I could never repay them for the kindness they have shown to us."

Against all the odds, Jalyn has turned out completely normal, she is going to pre-school and in September she will start kindergarten.

"She is such a blessing to our lives," said Janet. "She just amazes me."

The Burry family donates every year to the Bay St. George Sick Children's Telethon.  Give to Your Children's Helping Hand.