A Sydney couple who featured on One Born Every Minute Australia have revealed their anguish after their newborn twin daughter died last month.
Bianca and Daniel Hector featured on the Channel 10 show on Tuesday documenting the birth of twins Hunter and Brooklyn in August.
Just over two weeks ago and the day before their episode was originally due to be aired, they tragically lost Brooklyn after – without any warning signs – she stopped breathing while at home.
Their story was particularly endearing to the nation due to the family’s heartbreaking discovery six weeks before the twin’s birth that older daughter Mackenzie had acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
“Since then our lives have been over-shadowed with numerous lumbar punctures bone marrow biopsies blood and platelet transfusions and chemotherapy,” Ms Hector explained on a GoFundMe page.
Mackenzie’s endless issues with her diagnosis was taking its toll on the family and following the birth of Hunter and Brooklyn, the Hectors were pushed to their limit.
At the start of September, Mackenzie was admitted to ICU with sepsis.
“This was very trying on us as we had a one-year-old and newborn twins to care for and have found it extremely tough as we are both unable to work and have lived on one income for the year,” the mother explained.
But for Ms Hector, “the worst was yet to come”.
On November 18, Ms Hector returned home to Brooklyn not breathing and her husband on the phone to Triple-0.
She tried to give her CPR before paramedics arrived.
However hospital staff couldn’t save her and she was pronounced dead later in the evening.
Brave parents watch episode for first time on Tuesday
With the show initially due to air on November 19, a day after Brooklyn’s death, Westmead Hospital urgently contacted Network Ten to inform them of the family’s loss and to have the episode pulled.
The network duly obliged and it was arranged for the episode to instead be aired on December 3 with the family’s consent.
While still struggling through their ordeal, the parents made the brave decision to watch the episode together.
“I wasn’t sure whether I would be able to bring myself to watch it however I did and although it was extremely hard to watch I’m glad I did,” Ms Hector explained.
“It still does not feel real but we are all taking it one day at a time.”
Community rallies for heartbroken family
In the wake of their tragic loss, Ms Hector has created a GoFundMe page to help her family get through “this difficult time”.
“I cannot describe the feelings or emotions we are all experiencing at the moment and am finding it hard to continue each and every day,” she wrote.
“I would never normally ask for help but we in this difficult time of our lives are reaching out.
“Nothing will ever bring back our little princess nothing will ever stop the pain we are experiencing but we are asking for the help to try and keep things as normal as possible for Mackenzie, Peyton (the couple’s other child) and Hunter.”
While initially setting a target of $15,000, the family has been overwhelmed with the response, with the total raised sat at $53,000 on Wednesday morning.
Taking to the GoFundMe page on Wednesday, Ms Hector thanked the nation for “all the love and support” they’ve received.
“We would just like to express how truly grateful we are and immensely humbled by all the love and support throughout Australia,” she said.
Do you have a story tip? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.