Angele was like many women. In the prime of her life, fairly well-off, and two children at home, she was content. Until, that is, she discovered her third pregnancy. At twenty-two weeks along, the young woman decided to terminate her pregnancy by inducing its death by an injection of digoxin. The drug would stop the baby's beating heart, and a final pill would expel the child from the safe-haven of his mother's body. Angele describes the experience thus:
“The injection burned a lot as it went in.The discomfort was distracting. I still felt the ‘lams’ as they were being inserted. Dr. Perper told me to relax my muscles and noted that my cervix was slightly soft. I asked him what that meant and he said it was good.”
You can imagine how astonished Angele was, then, when, after experiencing pain which she assumed to simply be a part of the termination process, resulted in a live infant:
“In one agonizing push, I felt and heard something come out. Then immediately another push. I was weak. I just held my head in my hands for a moment. Then I decided to stand up. I looked. There was my baby, the whitish cord and what I thought surely must be the placenta."
Angele expounds on her feelings in this time, feelings of emotional distraught over what she had just done, and horror at the fact that none of the medical staff was answering her pleas for help:
"I started sobbing and lay down in the floor. I stared and stared at my son. I was horrified that I had just had him in a commode. His right leg moved. He curled up a bit like he was cold; I screamed for Violene! No one came. I managed to get to the doorway, pants down, blood everywhere and yelled again. I went back to my baby. I heard her say she’d be right there."
In the meantime, Angele whispered her remorse into the precious ears of the fading life in her arms; she decided upon his name: Rowan:
“I stayed beside Rowan talking to him, telling him how strong he was being and how proud I was of him. I told him God must really want us to be together for him to make it through everything he had just been through and that Mommy was so sorry but so happy to have a chance to love him. I told him he was a strong little miracle and that I couldn’t wait for him to meet his brother and sister. I just kept touching him, trying to warm him with my hands and talking to him so he would not feel any more afraid than he already must.”
The nurses and staff showed utter disregard for Angele's situation, and ignored all cries for Rowan's potential rescue:
“I showed her Rowan, told her he was alive and moving and to call 911! She took a quick look, said he’s not moving now and she’d be back to take care of things while walking out. I called her again. I was touching Rowan softly and he moved again. I called her back. Rowan jumped, I think startled by the loud sound of my calling for help. I showed her that he was moving and alive. I begged her to hurry and call 911, now!”
Angele requested an autopsy to confirm the child's brief life shortly following; when the local coroner rejected the action, however, Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Jan C. Garavaglia promptly assumed the duty. Upon examination, Garavaglia had found that, while the child's lungs revealed no evidence of air, the heart in all likelihood had beat---strongly suggesting that the child had been alive for an amount of time.
No action is being taken against the clinic concerning this matter---and Rowan's case is yet to be appreciated fully. His represents hundreds of thousands of similar cases---lives which struggled against adversity, only to be executed in a second attempt.
Rowan's mother, too, represents thousands of cases of mothers who regretted their decision to abort their unborn children. She testifies wistfully:
"Thank you very much for your kindness. It is amazing the out pour of kind words and support I am receiving after Rowan’s death.
I wish that I had such a network and support before, I would still be pregnant. I hope that women will see my humiliation and remorse and seek forgiveness if they are post abortive. I want to do everything in my power to see that this does not happen to other babies or mothers."