Sydney Madden, NICU Nurse
Arkansas Children’s Hospital
Nominated by Courtney Sick
There are no words that can accurately describe what a special and precious person Sydney Madden is to our family. Lucille “Luci” was born in an ambulance on October 26th, 2015. Her birth mother was high on drugs and did not realize the symptoms of preterm labor until it was too late. Luci was born at 25 weeks and weighed 1lb 5oz. We met Luci on her 3rd day of life, and we knew the moment we saw her that she was our daughter. We knew the long road we were in for, but we were all in.
Luci had her struggles. She had bilateral grade 3 brain bleeds and severe chronic lung disease. Around month 4, she was transferred to ACH to be under a particular doctor’s care who was known to work wonders with these chronic lung preemies. We are so blessed to have met Sydney shortly after we arrived through some mutual friends. She became Luci’s primary nurse, and she treated her as her own from day 1.
The love and compassion that Sydney showed Luci was astounding. She would leave very specific instructions about what Luci “liked” and “didn’t like.” She would check on her on her days off, she signed up extra to be there with us, and she did all of this while planning her wedding.
Unfortunately, Luci’s condition continued to deteriorate and we made the decision to remove her from the ventilator. That day is without a doubt the worst day of our lives, but Sydney was so amazing. She brought a couch into Luci’s room for us to use. She had soft music playing. She helped us play dress up with Luci before we removed the ventilator and helped us take all the pictures we wanted. Most importantly she was by our side as our sweet Luci left this earthly world.
After Luci passed, Sydney stayed with her, gave her a bath, and personally delivered her to our funeral director. I am sure that Sydney struggled so much that day, but she stayed so strong for us. She is a part of our family. We still talk about every week, and I cannot imagine our lives without her.