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Johnstown baby beats odds, family calling it a miracle

By: Kerri Corrado

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. -- A baby from Cambria County, only weeks old, recently survived a miraculous surgery.

Owen Sheridan's father, Kevin, said ultrasound images showed a portion of the brain had grown outside his skull.

The condition was considered life-threatening and doctors in Pittsburgh and Johnstown wouldn't operate.

The family, from Johnstown, was willing to do whatever it took to get Owen the surgery to save his life.

"I think it was so incredibly rare that it intimidated a lot of medical professionals," Kevin said. "We were made to believe that his brain was in such a condition that he wouldn't be born."

Jen Sheridan, Owen's mother, was just weeks into her pregnancy when she was given a grim outlook that her baby could be brain dead and there was a chance Owen would not survive.

But on Dec. 6, the Sheridan family called Owens birth a miracle.

"When he was born and we heard him cry, it was pretty amazing," Jen said.

They were not willing to give up on their miracle baby.

Jen and Kevin found doctors at Boston Children's Hospital who were willing to perform the surgery, removing the encephalocele, and possibly giving Owen a second chance at life.

"His risks diminished tremendously with the successful surgery," Kevin said.

Owen is now functioning as a normal baby, but does have some time until he's fully recovered.

"Since then he got stronger and stronger, and here we are," Kevin said.

The family is taking it day by day, hoping their story will inspire others. They are hoping to return home from Boston in the coming weeks.


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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times