Grieving mother works with governor on mission to honor infant loss

Posted By: Bayley Bischof Channel 8 Eyewitness News

A few months ago, Erin Konecky noticed a letter from the governor’s office in her mailbox.

It was addressed to her son, Spencer Keith, welcoming him into the world, reminding his parents to keep his immunizations up to date.

But Spencer died on October 12, just 96 minutes after he was born.

"To have that mistake happen it kind of pours salt on an open wound,” Erin Konecky said. “It just reminds you, I should have a two month old, I should be worrying about immunization."

So she turned that anger into action, not wanting another grieving parent to experience that pain.

She wrote a letter to Governor Ricketts, telling him her son’s story.

"At a 20 week ultrasound we found out there were some defects. A heart and a brain defect. We determined it was Trisomy 18, he had three copies of the 18th chromosome and in medical terms they call it not compatible with life,” she said.

Ricketts called her, saying this is a cause he wanted to take on, with her help.

"To know that I can take my grief and my pain and do something good too, in the name of Spencer is an amazing feeling,” Konecky said. “What I love about this is that the governor is listening."

Yesterday, Konecky met with two of Rickett’s staff members to discuss the possibility of sending condolence cards to families who experience infant loss.

She said, while the gesture may seem small, just having their baby, Spencer Keith’s name, on a piece of mail means the world, and parents in her shoes will feel the same.

Konecky said, "anytime somebody speaks your baby’s name, writes your baby’s name, it reminds you your child was here, and you did have this baby."

The governor’s office says he appreciates Konecky’s suggestions and is going to follow up with her on how they can honor families like hers