Transformed crib honors stillborn boy, comforts mother - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Transformed crib honors stillborn boy, comforts mother

Posted: Updated:
COKATO, Minn. (KMSP) -

Losing a child at birth is a difficult loss on many levels, especially when it leaves a prepared nursery empty as a reminder -- but one grieving Cokato mother got an emotional surprise when her son's crib was re-purposed.

For most of Valarie Watts' pregnancy, her son, Noah, was developing just fine. That all changed in the final few days.

"All week, I knew," Watts reflected. "He wasn't moving as much. I was very nervous."

His umbilical cord had become pinched in the womb, and Noah was stillborn last July. Even so, she wasn't ready to part with the crib she had prepared for him although keeping it was a reminder of the loss.

"She was kind of hesitant," Gerald Kumpula recalled. "I knew that maybe she didn't want to sell it, but yet, she did."

PHOTOS: Crib turned into memorial bench

A few miles away, Kumpula has a workshop in his garage on the outskirts of Cokato. Lately, one of the things he's been doing is converting headboards and footboards into benches. When he spotted the crib at the Watts family garage sale in April, he inquired about it even though it wasn't technically part of the sale.

"When he asked me if I was selling that, that he made benches, I hesitated," Watts admitted.

At the time, Kumpula had no idea how the crib had ended up there.

"His wife was there looking through my garage sale -- at some of the baby clothes -- and asked how old my son was since I don't use the crib anymore, and I told her that he had passed in July," Watts explained.

On the way back home, the Kumpulas decided that the crib they had picked up was bound to go back. So, a week later -- and as a total surprise to Watts -- he returned with the converted crib and gave it to her.

"I started crying instantly," Watts said.

Now, the bench has come to symbolize how a random act of kindness can turn a painfully unused crib into something comforting.

"It's amazing, and there's good people out there," Watts said. "There's proof."

SHARE THIS STORY: http://bit.ly/RABoxz

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Crash, semi fire shuts down Interstate 35W at Highway 36

    Crash, semi fire shuts down Interstate 35W at Highway 36

    Friday, July 25 2014 4:44 PM EDT2014-07-25 20:44:14 GMT
    photos@fox9.com / Brian Pattyphotos@fox9.com / Brian Patty

    A major accident and semi fire shut down Interstate 35W for more than an hour Friday morning near Roseville, Minn. The crash happened just before 6:30 a.m. near the junction of Highway 36.

    A major accident and semi fire shut down Interstate 35W for more than an hour Friday morning near Roseville, Minn. The crash happened just before 6:30 a.m. near the junction of Highway 36.


  • On Your Side: Samsung cell phone fire

    On Your Side: Samsung cell phone fire

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:31 PM EDT2014-07-25 02:31:18 GMT
    A 13-year-old North Texas girl was awoken in the night by a smoldering cell phone on the other side of her pillow, but the cell phone manufacturer says she did something they warn users about.
    A 13-year-old North Texas girl was awoken in the night by a smoldering cell phone on the other side of her pillow, but the cell phone manufacturer says she did something they warn users about.
  • Minn. crash victim's 4H friends to show animals at Isanti fair

    Minn. crash victim's 4H friends to show animals at Isanti fair

    Thursday, July 24 2014 7:50 PM EDT2014-07-24 23:50:12 GMT
    It is said that the true test of friendship is how many people come to help out a person in need, and if that's true, one 4H participant from Cambridge, Minn., just found out he has an entire fairground full.
    It is said that the true test of friendship is how many people come to help out a person in need, and if that's true, one 4H participant from Cambridge, Minn., just found out he has an entire fairground full.
Widgets Magazine
Powered by WorldNow

KDFW FOX 4
400 N. Griffin Street
Dallas, Texas 75202

Main Station Directory:
(214) 720-4444
News Fax:
(214) 720-3263 or (214) 720-3333

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices