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Articles for category Caregivers and Caregiving

A COPD Story Comes Full Circle

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Joe Morrison has a unique COPD story that has come full circle. His father Chuck was diagnosed with COPD in 2006, prompting Morrison to become an advocate for greater awareness around the disease. His advocacy efforts for the COPD Foundation brought him to our Annual Awards & Recognition Benefit in December 2011 in New York City, where he met Dr. Forrest M. Bird, inventor of the first practical mass-produced medical respirator and “Babybird” respirator—a pediatric respirator that saved the life of one of Morrison’s children, Brendan.

“I don’t know if there are words to describe how I felt. I am grateful beyond anything I can even say. The fact that I almost lost my son and he survived, and survived without have any kind of after-affects, there are no words to describe that,” Morrison says. “I would rate being able to thank Dr. Bird in person one of the top 10 things in my life. That’s big—I’m married and have four kids, so those are my top five right there. I can’t really accurately describe how great it felt to go to the person responsible for such an amazing device that has saved so many children, including my own.”

Brendan was born June 19th, 2005, and because of complications during birth, had to be rushed to another hospital and was put on the Babybird respirator.

“How well it functioned was reason enough to not have to put him on a bypass machine, and otherwise, he would have been kept in the hospital much longer with a much harder road for recovery,” Morrison says. “Today, Brendan has no affects from the lack of oxygen [at birth].”

“I’ve been very lucky to have been able to meet a lot of amazing people in my life, but to shake his [Dr. Bird’s] hand and look into his eyes, you can just tell he is someone with an enormous heart and incredible intellect. Within five seconds it was apparent what kind of an amazing person he is.”

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Categories: Caregivers and Caregiving Personal Stories Related COPD News

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