NICU babies and their families graduate in ceremony at Q2 Stadium

Sunday morning was a day of celebration for many families. 

Current and former NICU families in central Texas had the chance to walk the graduation stage at Q2 Stadium.

"To see all the NICU graduates from their hospitals and get to reconnect with the families to see how these babies have grown and thrive: it's really a full circle moment for our NICU staff," said Rhonda Reed, NICU director at St. David's Medical Center.

Abigail Meadors was a premature baby born at St. David's Medical Center. Because of the intensive care provided for the babies in the NICU, her family grew a close relationship with the nurses there.

"For 47 days [we] had some of the most amazing nurses [we] still talk to this da," said Erin Meadors, Abigail's mom. "Sharing our milestones, how far she's come."

Meadors said today was an emotional day for her family.

"She came from being 3 pounds, maybe 2 pounds, to where she is today, being able to talk and climb," she said. "That was a large part of them taking care of her there."


Having a baby in the NICU can be emotionally challenging. Hand to Hold is a national nonprofit that helps support families while their babies are in the NICU.

"The different levels of support and the family support specialists," Reed said. "It's been it's one of the best things we've ever done for our families in my 35 years."

"It's wonderful because you see everyone is there having the same story we are," Meadors said. "They're celebrating their kids and the wonderful people that were there to help us."