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Our annual Walk To Remember Event will be held at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church at 5:30 - 8:30 on Thursday, October 13, 2016.

Event Information

Meet the Clark Family

This year marks the 10th year Wil and Janet Clark have attended Capital Are Healthy Start’s WALK TO REMEMBER. It also marks the 10th anniversary of their infant daughter’s, Blaire, passing. Here is their story:

“It was around 6:00 a.m on July 31, 2006. I woke up and I walked over to Blaire's bassinet; she was laying there wide awake, kicking her feet with her hands in her mouth. I knew she was hungry, but she didn't make a sound. She was so beautiful laying there. I tried to wake Janet up so she could feed her with me, but she was tired so I let her rest. I then took Blaire into the living room and put her in the swing so I could make her a bottle. She only drank about 2 ounces, so I burped her and she was done. As I was rocking her to sleep in our recliner, I like many parents have done before, I fell asleep, too.

Around 8:00 a.m. I woke up because it felt like something shook me. I looked down and Blaire was laying half way across my lap. What I saw has forever haunted me. Blaire was purple. I put my hand on her chest to see if she was breathing and she wasn't. I jumped up out the chair screaming for Janet. My first words were OH MY God! What have I done? I handed Blaire to Janet who started CPR while I ran call 911. I remember telling dispatch that they needed to come fast, my girlfriend was doing CPR on our baby who was not breathing. For one minute I thought she was breathing again, but she wasn't.

We could hear the sirens from the ambulance and police coming up the road, but it seemed like it took forever for them to get to us. EMS finally arrived and Janet gave Blaire to the paramedics. They took her into the ambulance for what seemed like an hour while Janet and I stood at the back, in shock, just praying that Blaire really wasn't gone. They stepped out the ambulance and walked to us. They said ‘Your baby is dead; she's been dead for two hours. She was suffocated.’ I remember looking up at the sky thinking this can't be real; our precious baby can't be dead. Janet fell to the ground and I went with her. Before the ambulance left, they opened the back doors and we got to see her one more time.

What was a happy family of four, our family, was torn apart. Our home became a crime scene with police everywhere. I remember standing at the back of the police car, giving my statement. I looked over to Janet, while a family friend, Janie Sites, was holding her. I couldn't believe it. I told the officer I couldn't write down what happened, so I told him word for word what occurred and I signed the statement. He asked me was this the whole truth—sadly it was. A short time later, two unmarked vehicles showed up with two people who had come to investigate our child's death. They separated Janet and I, and asked us what happened over and over again.

Soon family members started arriving and they too were devastated. I don't really remember who all was there, I just kept thinking I was dreaming and I was waiting to wake up. The question that really made it seem real was, when we were asked us what funeral home we wanted to release our child to. Funeral home? This can't be real. I looked at Janet and she looked at me, we both replied Beggs Funeral Home. We asked if we could see Blaire one more time, but we couldn’t because she was on her way to Tallahassee for an autopsy.

They took her bottle with milk still in it, and her formula and the gallon of water I used to make her bottle. Our last request was if we could we have Blaire’s pink sleeper that she passed away in. Our wish was granted. The next morning we received her sleeper.

Blaire died on a Monday morning and we didn't sleep until that Wednesday night, after we got to see her. Planning her funeral was the second hardest thing we have ever done. Still in shock and disbelief, I couldn't believe we were sitting with our family planning our daughter's funeral. It was becoming real; she's really gone.

The day of her funeral. I remember waking up thinking today is the day, it's really over. We walked into the funeral home and she was laying there tucked into her pink blanket. She looked like a baby doll. I still couldn't believe what was going on. Our lives were turned upside down. Janet gave Blaire the first ring I ever bought her, and I gave Blaire one of my mom's rings. Jaydyn drew a picture for Blaire and we put pictures of all of us with Blaire in the casket with her. In one hand she had her pacifier. We had bought Blaire a pink precious moments bible—we gave that to her, too.

The funeral director came in and told us we had 15 minutes. Our hearts were crushed again. We only have 15 minutes left with our baby? We asked that everyone leave the room so we could be with Blaire just 15 more minutes. We pulled two chairs up to her casket, holding her hands and crying together. I couldn't believe I was going through this and that the woman I loved was so heart broken. The doors cracked and we were told that it was time. We kissed her goodbye and walked out the room. Mr. Joe came walking out holding her casket, which looked like a jewelry box. We asked him if we could ride with her in the hearse and he didn't hesitate to say ‘you sure can.’ We got in and he let us put our hands on her casket the whole ride. Driving to the cemetery felt like hours. We still couldn't believe this was going on.

Days went by and we were learning how to live without our baby. If it wasn't for Jaydyn, I don't know what we would have done. It took us months to put all of Blaire's stuff away. We went to the cemetery three or four times a day. That that lasted for years.

We felt like different people, like we were living in a dream. Weeks went by after her death and we still didn't know the cause of death. One day the phone rang and it was Donna Lee. She wanted to meet us and give us the results we had been waiting on. I prayed that Blaire didn't suffer and that it wasn't my fault. She handed us the envelope and I opened it. It was her autopsy. I couldn't read it. I asked if she would show me where it says her cause of death. She did and it was our worst fear. Blaire died due to Co-Sleeping with me (this was my Facebook post on the anniversary of her death this year).

We now have a rainbow baby who is 9 years old. He was due on the same day as Blaire, one year later - his name is Blaine! We also have a 7 year old now and her name is Paityn.

This will be our 10th Walk to Remember! And this year is also the 10th anniversary of our daughter’s death. We feel honored to be part of the event that has helped with our grieving process over the years. It is a special way for us to remember our daughter and many other babies who didn't have a chance at life. If we save one baby or give someone hope, our mission is accomplished.”