A family in Jacksonville, Florida, is preparing for a celebration of life on Saturday after a 37-year-old mother of four unexpectedly died during childbirth on April 29.
Lauren Louise Accurso’s newborn baby boy, Matthew Jr., miraculously survived, but has been in the NICU at Wolfsons Children’s Hospital, according to a GoFundMe page created for the family. The baby “fights for his life” in the wake of his mother’s death, WXJT reported Tuesday.
Accurso also leaves behind her husband, Dr. Matthew Accurso, and their three daughters Ali Rose, 8, Naomi Belle, 5, and Layne Louise, 2, according to her obituary.
“The outpouring of love and concern for Lauren, Matt, baby Matthew and family from around the world has encouraged and brought such comfort to Matt and his family during this time of grieving and loss,” says the GoFundMe page.
On Wednesday, the fundraiser’s organizers, Mary and Peter Camiolo, posted an update on Matthew Jr., writing, “The final brain scan / MRI test results will be known soon and the neurologist’s / Infant Brain specialists who are covering baby Matthews case are working to get him the best possible care.”
The “great news right now,” they added, is that his vitals are strong, he’s doing well breathing and is “digesting food like a champ.”
Calling the development “incredible,” Camiolos said they “are praising God for that.”
Accurso married her high school sweetheart, Matthew, in 2004, according to her obituary.
“Lauren was an accomplished entrepreneur as the founder of Cre8 Design. Her mission was to help bring order out of chaos in people’s homes and hearts,” the family noted in her obituary. “She willingly laid this aside to pursue what she considered to be her calling in life … a wife and mother.”
“Her faith touched every aspect of her life,” they continued to write. “The people who loved her most would describe her as loyal, compassionate, eclectically creative, deep thinker, full of wisdom, joyous, fun loving, and full of grace.”
WJXT cited a new report that the CDC released on Tuesday saying that “pregnancy-related deaths can happen up to a year after birth and are preventable in the majority of cases.”
According to the report, approximately 700 women die from pregnancy-related complications in the U.S. every year. Three out of every five of those deaths were preventable.
There will be a visitation at Craig Funeral Home on Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. in St. Augustine, and a celebration of her life will be held at Crescent Beach Baptist Church on Saturday at 10 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Colonial Church building fund or directly to the Accurso family via GoFundMe.
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