Ridgeland family provides home health to chronically ill children after loss of their child

Published: Apr. 27, 2022 at 9:39 PM CDT
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RIDGELAND, Miss. (WLBT) - Tonight, we have an amazing story of a mother and her family who are still struggling after the loss of their most precious little boy.

However, McKinley’s death prepared his family in ways they never could imagine for their next chapter in life. This family now uniquely gifted with the ability to help other families dealing with unimaginable obstacles.

“Having a child in general can be a lot,” said Daniel Rushing. “And having a medically fragile child can add to that.”

Keira and Daniel Rushing were elated when they found out they were expecting their second child, a boy, to be born in December.

“Later on we found out he had something called thoracic dystrophy,” said Keira. “With that, it’s also referred to as Jeune’s syndrome.”

McKinley was born beautiful, but with a rare kidney disease.

“Over the course of four years,” continued Keira, “McKinley ended up having to have a tracheotomy. He was also on paratonia dialysis.”

The Rushings turned to home health nurses to help settle the chaos that comes with dealing with a medically fragile child and to make sure McKinley had constant care.

“Once we did that, things became a lot more calm and McKinley was able to do and live just like a normal child, a healthy child would do,” said Daniel. “He went to the beach, he traveled, he went to his sister’s cheer competitions, he flew in an airplane. There was not much that McKinley didn’t do because we focused on his abilities rather than his disabilities.”

But in April of 2021, McKinley passed away.

“We wake up every day and just kinda have to push through the emotions of losing your...” said Daniel as he choked up. “But you wake up every day [and] it’s the first thing you think of and it’s the last thing that you think of when you lay your head on the pillow at night.”

And through his death, McKinley’s family found a new calling: a way to provide home health to other families dealing with the devastating reality of a chronically ill child.

“Simply because we’ve been there, we’ve been in that position in a way you feel kind of hopeless,” said Keira “But having nurses come in, they actually become like your friends. It’s like a second mind, a second parent; someone else in the house with you to help with your kids.”

The Rushings believe they are uniquely prepared to offer support to other families in a way only they can understand.

“Well, after McKinley transitioned, we saw fit that we would title it Mckinley’s Care: Anchoring hearts one family at a time.”

If you or someone you know could use support from McKinley’s Care, here is the information:

Contact info:

(769) 257-9149 cell

(601) 790-7566 office

mckinleyscare@yahoo.com

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