KNOXVILLE, Tenn (WVLT) -- Rebecca Jeffers couldn't wait for her first granddaughter to be born, "I am over excited, overly excited. Her name is Brooklyn Hope O'brien. I am going to be Mammaw!"
But Brooklyn couldn't wait either. She arrived March 22, 2013.
She was 23 weeks into term, weighing just 1.4 pounds.
UT Medical Center's Nurse Manager of the NICU, Kim Massey says, "Most newborns when born full term which is 40 weeks, weigh 7 pounds to 8 on average."
Brooklyn's extremely critical condition keeps the Campbell County family close by .
"We live over an hour away, but it is well worth the drive. UT Medical Center has been good about giving us a place to stay. Plus, she had gotten bad, and we needed to be close," says Rebecca.
The comfort and care put this Mammaw on a mission.
"Being here and seeing bigger picture of what they do with these babies is just amazing. I was just trying to think of ways that i could give back," says Rebecca.
So, she started a blanket drive for the NICU.
Nurse Massey says,"The babies, when first born, especially the pre-term are very sick, do better in a dark environment, so we put the blankets on top of the isolet, and help give that darker, quieter environment."
While Brooklyn's family wait and pray for her to reach full term, they have something else to focus on.
Brooklyn's mammaw says, "At first my goal was try to collect 200, but now 1000 to 1500, that's my goal. That would bless me very well, to do it in honor of her and the people taking care of her."
Rebecca says the Campbell County community has been very accepting and helpful with her blanket drive that there are sites with boxes all over the county collecting blankets.
Rebecca Jeffers can be reached at: (423) 201-8644 for more information on drop off locations.
Also--- UT Medical Center will accept the new blankets, just contact Volunteer Services and be sure the blankets are new, with tags on them.
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