Madison baby and her family wait on much-needed heart transplant

Madison baby and her family wait on much-needed heart transplant

MADISON, AL (WAFF) - Born in October 2014, Raegan Preslyn Morell is the second child for Brian and Jessica Morell. She is also the younger sister of 4-year-old Riley, who is staying with her aunt.

Another aunt, Sarah Solomon, sat down with us to tell Raegan's story.

"Raegan was born Oct. 22 at Athens/Limestone Hospital," Solomon began. "Her mom, Jessica, and her husband, Brian, were told that she was a healthy baby. But the day after she was born, her pediatrician came in to see Raegan and said she had a heart murmur."

She was sent to a Huntsville Pediatric cardiologist. But the problem, Sarah says, was worse that originally thought.

"He did an echocardiogram and he said that she had a heart defect that she was born with, so he thought it would be best to send her to Children's Hospital in Birmingham. She had an interrupted aortic arch."

That meant open heart surgery, which took place in early November.

"They took an artery from her right arm," Solomon explained, "and they replaced her aortic arch. They also put in a pacemaker to help control her heart rhythm and rate."

As it turned out. it wasn't enough.

"On Dec. 30, she was officially put on the United Network for Organ Sharing. And she does need a heart transplant. And they're there currently waiting on her to get a heart transplant," said Solomon.

Her parents have basically given up everything to be with their daughter and be with her during her struggle for life.

"There is a team down there, ready to go whenever they do get a heart for her. But they have to find the most perfect match," Solomon said. "And that match means another family will face a tragedy.

"We really want to bring awareness to organ donation," the child's aunt continued. "Through a tragedy, they can use somebody's organs and they can give life and hope to somebody else that really needs it."

And for the Morells, that means a lot of waiting and prayers.

To learn more about Raegan's story and learn how you can help, visit this Facebook group.

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