Couple shares lifelong connection with NICU team


CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — NICU nurses threw a baby shower for their now-adult patients.

Christine and Austin Hood just celebrated their two-year wedding anniversary and are expecting a baby in September. The two have shared a special connection their whole lives that neither knew about until they started dating.

“His mom was creeping on my Facebook and noticed I was friends with the nurse,” Christine explained.

It turned out that nurse, Chris Wetzel, was also Austin’s when he was in the NICU, a short time apart from Christine.

For Wetzel, their wedding, and now their pregnancy, is something she’s looked forward to for years. She’s been with Christine’s family through the highs and lows, starting with Christine’s birth.

“I watched Jim rejoice and grieve in the same day,” Wetzel explained.

Christine’s mom developed meningitis while she was pregnant. She was removed from life support just after Christine’s birth. Wetzel has been present at pivotal moments in Christine’s life.

“She was there for me when I was there,” Christine said. “And now she’s going to be there for me – for my baby.”

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