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Baby Born With 3 Birth Defects Called A 'Christmas Miracle'

By Kathy Walsh

DENVER (CBS4) - A family in Wyoming is rejoicing. They'll have their baby boy home for Christmas. He's spent the first two months of his life in Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children (RMHC) in Denver.

Grayson Walker was born with more problems than you can imagine, but his mom, Danielle, says he's a fighter. She found the right doctor to see Grayson through two lifesaving surgeries.

Grayson Walker
Grayson Walker (credit: CBS)
Grayson Walker
Grayson Walker (credit: CBS)

"He's a miracle. He's our little miracle for sure," said Walker.

She has been at Grayson's side since Oct. 20, the day he was born with not one, but three life-threatening birth defects.

"Grayson was about as ill as you get," said Dr. Steven Rothenberg, Chief of Pediatric Surgery at RMHC.

The baby had an incomplete swallowing tube, an abnormal connection to his airway, and he was born with his liver outside his abdomen.

"His problems were not compatible with life," explained Rothenberg.

Danielle Walker with Grayson (credit: CBS)

Grayson was in good hands. Rothenberg is a pioneer in minimally invasive surgery for children. He did the first-ever in 2000 at Presbyterian/St. Luke's Medical Center and teaches the approach to surgeons all over the world.

He immediately repaired Grayson's problems, operating through just a few small incisions. But weeks later, as Grayson was set to go home to Gillette, Wyoming, his airway was collapsing.

Danielle Walker with Grayson (credit: CBS)

"He went limp in my arms. That's an experience no mom should ever see," said Walker.

Rothenberg performed another lifesaving procedure.

"The fact that he's ready to go home now is really sort of a Christmas miracle, " said Rothenberg.

"He's just been a trooper, so we're pretty blessed," said Walker.

The Walker family (credit: CBS)

"I think Grayson will live a totally normal life," said Rothenberg.

The baby boy is expected to leave the hospital for home any day now. For the Walkers, little Grayson will be the best Christmas gift ever.

LINK: Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children

Kathy Walsh is CBS4's Weekend Anchor and Health Specialist. She has been with CBS4 for more than 30 years. She is always open to story ideas. Follow Kathy on Twitter @WalshCBS4.

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