Golisano Children's Hospital honors children who beat the odds

Posted at 11:00 PM, Jun 14, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-15 07:00:41-04

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Former patients at Golisano Children's Hospital came back to say 'thank you' to the staff that helped them through a rough patch, but the hospital also paid tribute to them.

The hospital put together a 'Wall of Hope' with seven tiles that featured pictures and stories of the children from when they were brought into the world and where they are today.

"I wanted them to know that behind these doors there is so much hope," said Ashley Goss, one of the respiratory therapists at the hospital. "Miracles happen behind this door," she added.

Goss's own story motivated her to make the 'Wall of Hope' possible.

"In memory of my son that passed away three days after he came in to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit," said Goss.

Goss's experienced helped her connect with all of the families that came back today.

"Ashley was there when Skyler was born, so I was excited that she wanted to take pictures of her so I can have those memories," said Amber McLallen, her daughter spent four months in NICU.

The 'Wall of hope' has 7 tiles with 8 stories. Goss gathered them to inspire hope in the darkest times.

"There will be a big picture of their 'now' picture, a little picture of them in the NICU, and underneath is their story that the parents wrote," she said.

Families posed for pictures in front of their children's tiles. They say they remembered how they got from the first snapshot to the latest one.

"How blessed she is to just be alive because for a long time I didn't think she was going to make it," said Lillian Williams-Relf, her child spent 126 days in the NICU.

The families happy to be apart of the 'Wall of Hope.'

"I wish we would've had a 'Wall of Hope' back then so the parents could've had something to look forward to," said Williams-Relf."But I'm glad that the parents are coming now can be inspired," she added.

Goss and the hospital staff have big plans for the wall. They hope to continue to grow it with more inspiring stories out of the NICU.