Also accompanying the women, who are sisters in law, was Hooper’s daughter, Kelsyn Hooper, who was born premature last year and spent time in the NICU. The connection between the family and Floyd’s NICU goes further back than that. Kelsyn’s dad, Connor Hooper, was also a NICU baby at Floyd, as was Elrod’s husband, Adam.
Elrod, Executive Director of the Polk County Chamber of Commerce, spearheaded the drive to get the Cuddle Bears with the help of Hannah Hooper. She also lives in Cedartown and is a radiologic technologist at The Breast Center at Floyd.
“The NICU has obviously been a special place for our families,” Elrod said. “It meant so much to us when Kelsyn got little things, like a baby beanie, when she was there last year. We just wanted to give something back to the NICU. It can be a long stay back there for many babies.”
Elrod said their goal was to get the 100 books in a month. They finished it in three weeks. The company that sells the books, Usborne Books & More, donated one book for every two purchased through the fundraiser.
The Floyd Medical Center’s Level III NICU provides advanced care for babies with severe or potentially life-threatening conditions.