Monmouth Medical Center Foundation is proud to announce The Monello Family as the honorees for the 12th annual Big Steps for Little Feet Walk on September 16, 2018. Big Steps for Little Feet is a little walk to make a big difference, raising funds and awareness for The Hirair and Anna Hovnanian Foundation Regional Newborn Center.

Monmouth Medical Center’s Foundation Trustee Mario Monello’s grandson, Michael Restuccia, now one year old, was delivered via emergency caesarean section at Monmouth Medical Center at exactly 28 weeks. He was three months early, weighing only 3 lbs., 4 oz., and was immediately transferred to the Hirair and Anna Hovnanian Foundation Regional Newborn Center.

Life challenged the Restuccia and Monello families in those early weeks– Michael developed an infection and subsequently a life-threatening endocarditis, an infection in the inner lining of the heart chambers and valves. He was very sick and with not much time left, the neonatologists at MMC explained that his needs exceeded what Monmouth was capable of. That afternoon, the team made the arrangements to take Michael in a helicopter to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. After five long weeks at CHOP and too many uncertain nights to count, Michael returned to MMC.

After 63 days, Michael came home. The family is eternally grateful to the entire neonatologist staff at MMC, including Dr. Kale, Dr. Hudome, Dr. Rekedal,  Dr. Qualter, Dr. Alemany and Dr. Attardi, as well as to his nurses, especially Michael’s primary nurse, Alexandra Sargent. The family credits the team’s knowledge, attentiveness, compassion and care for saving Michael’s life.