Memorial website in the memory of your loved one
December 28, 2003
After four home pregnancy tests, we finally believe the unexpected -- we're having another baby. Our Christmas present from God.
April 2004
Andrew is in the UK on business, and Erica learns from doctors that Paul has Tetralogy of Fallot (a heart defect), might have a genetic disorder, might have malformed "boy parts", and might have something wrong with his brain.
June 2004
Erica develops severe pre-eclampsia and is hospitalized "for the duration", however long that might be.  She is not quite 30 weeks pregnant, and the goal is to make it to 34 weeks with both Erica and Paul healthy before Paul is born.  She receives daily ultrasounds to check on Paul's health.
July 11, 2004

God decides that it's time for Paul to be born, and Erica goes into labor.  It is actually the easiest of all three labors for Erica, either because Paul is so small or because God just decided to be merciful to her.

July 12, 2004

Paul is born just before 6:00 a.m. via C-section.  It's a challenging delivery because Erica has lots of scar tissue inside from her previous C-section (Abby).  Paul is taken to the Intensive Care Nursery, where he lives his whole life.

July 30, 2004

We get an early-morning call from one of Paul's doctors, telling us that they had to rescuscitate him twice during the night, and we'd better get up to the hospital.

When we arrive, they tell us that Paul probably won't make it through the morning, much less till Grandma Ruthie arrives that night from Florida.

We make some calls, and we're joined at different times during the day by friends and family who come to say good-bye to Paul.  Some come for a few minutes, and others stay till the bitter end.

- Poppa & Nana (stayed till the end)
- Auntie
- Big Sisters Sarah & Abby
- Uncle Rick & Auntie Adriana
- Uncle Mike & Auntie Diane (who was pregnant at the time)
- Uncle Jimmy and Velia
- Tammy
- Mike Amodeo
- Mark & Bobbi Higuera (stayed till the end)
- Gordon & Fiona Blasius (stayed till the end)
- Rich Hua

Through much prayer and lots of skin-on-skin holding, Paul's vitals go up long enough for him to make it till Grandma Ruthie arrives.  She gets to hold him for a little while.

July 31, 2004
In the wee hours of the morning, we pray, then have the doctors disconnect the tubes and monitors, and we hold Paul and "talk him home". 

1:20 a.m., Paul goes home to God.
August 7, 2004

We have a "family and friends barbecue" to remember and honor Paul.  It was at the large picnic shelter at our local park, and over 100 adults and a passel of children attended.  Many people.  Much great food.  Many tears.

- I'll Fly Away
- No Tears in Heaven
The singers kind of hacked the songs b/c they weren't terribly familiar with them and hadn't practiced, but the hymns meant a lot to us (Andrew & Erica).

Andrew told Paul's whole story b/c there were people in attendance we hadn't seen in a long time -- in some cases 20+ years.

Our minister, Rich Hua, did a brief service, basically using the Bible verses we gave him and saying what we asked him to say.

Later, we mailed each person/family who came a baby announcement-type card with Paul's picture (the one with Andrew's finger) that said:
Sweet Boy Gone Home
Paul Walter Gil
July 12 - 31, 2007

August 12, 2004
Baby Paul is laid to rest at St. Joseph's Cemetery in the niche next to his Grandpa Paul's, which Grandma Lorna had originally bought for herself but generously gave to Baby Paul.

We had a brief service at the cemetery with members from both sides of Andrew's family, plus Erica's immediate family.  Andrew read a Bible verse.  Erica read something that Aunt Becky had written about Paul the day of the memorial service, along with things Sarah & Abby had said about Paul.  Grandma Ruthie put a couple of photos in the niche.  Andrew prayed, and we let the cemetery men seal up the niche.

Afterwards, we all trooped over to Jimmy & Velia's house for a huge feast.

(Because of how Baby Paul looked at the end, we didn't have any sort of viewing.  The funeral home where he was cremated laid him out anyway, just in case, and Andrew went alone to see him.  Erica still regrets not going, but Andrew insists she couldn't have handled seeing him.  When he was cremated, Baby Paul was wearing the "going home" outfit Abby had chosen for him before he was born and was wrapped in a yellow receiving blanket Robin had given him.  He had his teddy bear from Auntie with him.)
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