A miracle baby who was born 15 weeks prematurely and weighed just 1lb 11oz has defied the odds to beat E. coli, sepsis AND Covid.
Little Archie Edwards left his parents Sheree Murray and Robert Edwards, both 21, fearing he was going to die after he was born without a heartbeat on Dec 1, 2020.
Medics resuscitated the stillborn baby after 40 minutes of chest compressions before they placed him on a ventilator – which Robert said “felt like an eternity”.
The tiny fighter had yet another scare at just five weeks old when he suddenly caught E. coli, a bacterial infection, which led to sepsis.
Further tests revealed the baby had also contracted covid – and is thought to be one of the youngest babies to contract the virus in Britain at just 25 weeks gestation.
His terrified parents said they feared they were going to lose their first child and were left “hoping and praying” he would pull through.
Sheree said she had “always dreamed” of having a baby and feared the worst.
But the brave baby fought off both Covid and sepsis and is currently recovering at Burnley General Hospital’s NICU unit.
It is hoped he will return home to the loving parents in March.
Sheree, from Colne, Lancs., said: “In the beginning I was shocked more than anything as I had no complications during the pregnancy.
“But when we were told about his heartbeat and then the sepsis and covid it was all terrifying.
“I’ve always wanted to be a mum so I was absolutely over the moon when I found out I was pregnant – and we didn’t want to lose him.
“But he’s a fighter, and holding him for the first time felt completely surreal.
“He was very light, I had him on my chest, the only thing I felt was his head.
“It was the only thing that made it feel like it was real.
“I’m so happy with the progress he’s made, I’m so proud of him.”
Robert said they had no indication that Archie would be premature as Sheree showed no symptoms and were “totally shocked” when she suddenly began to feel crippling pain on Nov 30.
He said she was in so much pain that he thought she was going to have a miscarriage.
She was at her sister’s home when her water broke and she was rushed to hospital – and just 55 minutes later Archie was born.
The tot was born at 25 weeks at Burnley General Hospital weighing just over 1lb – and was covered in more blood than Robert had “ever seen”.
But the baby has since recovered, and Robert described the moment he held his tiny hand for the first time as the “greatest moment” in his life.
Robert said: “My head was completely blank. When I saw the blood I’ve never been so scared in my life and I was just hoping and praying.
“They couldn’t find a heartbeat, I thought I’d lost my firstborn son.
“It was so scary.
“I just stood by Sheree’s side and just telling her she was doing so well.
“They rushed him on to this table in the same room, he wasn’t even two metres away from me.
“They turned this heater on and they took 40 minutes to resuscitate him.
“But It felt like an eternity. My son was just there, and I felt completely helpless because I couldn’t do anything.
“It took them so long I wanted to do something for him. I was getting upset. I just sat down next to Sheree and prayed.
“When they said he had a heartbeat I’ve never felt so grateful in my life.”
Archie’s fight was far from over as at five weeks old he fell sick again and caught E. coli which led to sepsis.
Doctors began to test him aggressively which is when they discovered the tot had also contracted coronavirus.
Robert said that he was “frightened to death” when he heard his boy tested positive for the killer virus.
Little Archie was rushed to the ICU at five weeks old and placed on a ventilator for two weeks to save his life.
Robert said it was heart-breaking he wasn’t able to be by his son’s side or hold his hand for two weeks as he was placed in self-isolation.
He said: “He was five weeks old when he got E. coli, and his lungs were collapsing and they were starting to struggle with what to do.
“They did a Covid swab which came back positive.
“His lungs were going white, and I honestly thought we were going to lose him in those ten days.
“I was frightened to death.
“When we were told he had Covid we thought it was going to be the last of it – it was the scariest moment of our lives.”
Archie, who’s due date was March 14, 2021, will hopefully be able to return home around that time.
But Robert said he already feels like the “proudest dad in the world”.
The construction worker said: “I feel like the proudest dad in the world at the moment with everything he’s had to go through, everything Sheree has done.
“We’ve got an amazing bond. I’m a father to a beautiful boy called Archie. It’s the greatest feeling in the world.
“Holding him in my arms was the greatest moment in my life.”
The parents were not allowed to see him together so they took turns driving to the hospital – Sheree in the mornings and Robert in the evenings.
Robert, who has been with Sheree for five years, said: “We weren’t allowed to go together due to Covid.
“We had to come home every night but we went to see him every day. Sheree went in the morning and I went at night.
“He’s got no infections whatsoever now.
“He’s still in hospital and he will stay until about March so we will continue to see him one at a time.
“And I cannot wait to have him home with us – safe and sound.
“He’s our miracle baby and we couldn’t be prouder of him.”