Reagan Nielsen, 8 months

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On Oct. 4, 2018 our sweet baby Reagan lost her fight after 8 precious months of life.

Reagan was born to Daniel Nielsen and Raney Frick on Jan. 28, 2018. She was born with a rare syndrome that made every day we spent with her even more special. We knew from pregnancy that her time with us was going to be limited. Originally, the doctors said she may not make it full term, but she did. She proved she was a fighter from the get go because, after 17 days spent in the NICU with some of the most incredible staff we have ever met, she was strong enough to come home with us and finally meet her brother and sisters.

There were definitely more hurdles than expected when our sweet angel was brought home. We had to learn how to tube feed, we met nearly every pediatric specialist in the valley, and we got very comfortable using medical terms. But even considering all her setbacks, Reagan began to meet small milestones. Her doctors’ visits, which were initially every day of the week, became further apart. We started to have only good news to share with the doctors and therapists. And then in May she had an illness that required a nearly week-long stay in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit-PICU.

Reagan’s tired little body was apparent after her stay in the PICU, but she did not give up. She still smiled and laughed. She had a hard time gaining back her strength, but soon she began to thrive. She woke up one morning and it was as if she just “got it.” She started nursing, she was able to take a bottle, she even began to eat regular baby food … all this stuff she wasn’t able to do before. And because of it, her little body started to gain some weight and some strength. And then on the 3rd, her little body just couldn’t keep up anymore. Her fight that had started the day she was born had her worn out. Her little heart stopped and she stopped breathing. Our Creston Fire family and Evergreen Fire started the fight for her. They reassured us that they were going to do everything they could to save our baby girl. And they did.

Reagan’s heart got a rhythm back in the Emergency Room and Respiratory was there to breathe for her. She wasn’t ready to give up the fight. We were sent to the PICU and Reagan fought another 12 hours before her fight was over. She passed away in her daddy’s arms with her mama holding tight to her. We have been so blessed to spend the last eight months with this incredible little being that has taught us so much in her short time. She touched the hearts of every person she met.

We can’t say thank you enough to Dr. Kaneta, Dr. Veneman, and all the staff in the NICU; Dr. Martinez-Poyer; Dr. Schwaller; Dr. Falk and Rachel Desimone; Dr. Schow; Dr. Rice and Katherine Flass; both Dr. Vassilis Siomos and Dr. Austine Siomos; Dr. Wheeler; Dr. Schmidt and Maura Hamilton; Dr. Flass and Ashley Dunn; Dr. Keele; Dr. Stein; Rhonda and Sam in Speech Therapy; Quincy and Tracy in Physical Therapy; Linda Fredenberg; members of the PICU; Emergency Room staff; all the staff at Shriner’s Hospital in Spokane; and every other member that had a hand in Reagan’s life (I know we forgot quite a few).

Reagan is survived by her parents, Dan and Raney; her siblings Livia, Brook, Anneliese, Jackson and Solveig; and her grandparents Ron and Pam Nielsen, Dave and Wendi Frick, and Pat Ambrose.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 13, at Buffalo Hill Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made out to Dr. Kristin Veneman for Tavia’s Toybox, a program thru the NICU that donates new toys to the little fighters that graduate from the NICU.

Friends are encouraged to visit the website www.buffalohillfh.com to leave notes of condolences for the family. Buffalo Hill Funeral Home and Crematory caring for the family.

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