NICU Thanksgiving dinner serves up hope

KING 5's Natalie Swaby reports.

SEATTLE -- Instead of Thanksgiving around the dining room table, some are spending the holiday at the hospital.

David Caster of Kenmore understands. His Thanksgiving baby actually arrived in August.

"She was born at 24 weeks and 5 days of gestation," said Caster.

Caster's daughter, Silvia, was placed on life support and spent four months in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

"It was a fairly complicated case, so it was touch and go a lot of the time," said Caster.

After two and a half months, Silvia turned a corner. She started gaining weight and growing. Today she is a happy and healthy six-year-old.

Her family is forever grateful to the nurses and doctors. And that's part of the reason why Caster was back at the hospital this week, visiting as a volunteer.

"We get the joy of serving the current families that are in the NICU," he said.

On Monday afternoon, a team of volunteers from March of Dimes worked beside Chef Nathan Batway with Hotel Sorrento to serve dinner at Swedish Medical Center. They prepared enough dinner and dessert for 200 people.

"We just want to bring it to them," said Mandi George, a NICU family support specialist with March of Dimes.

It's become a tradition at the hospital, and Andrea Sander benefitted from it last year.

"It meant a lot to see families who had been through it and came out the other side with happy, healthy kids," said Sander. 

She returned with her son Sullivan, who spent 60 days in the hospital after he was born, to show families how they made it through a terrible time and are now thriving.

Copyright 2016 KING


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