After Seeking Help of Public, Heartbroken Mom Reunited with Necklace Containing Ashes of Infant Son

There are few things more exciting than welcoming a new family member into the world, and few things as devastating as realizing the future you’ve imagined will never take place.

Cheryl Nance Knabenschuh and Jon Knabenschuh got heartbreaking news when they were 20 weeks pregnant: Their little boy had Osteogenesis imperfecta type 2.

Doctors said that termination was an option, but the Knabenschuhs wanted to give “Quinn” every chance possible and chose to keep fighting for him.

“We were told there would be a 1% chance of survival at birth and we were told how he would suffer regularly from broken and fractured bones for his entire life if he did survive,” they wrote on their GoFundMe.

“We were willing and prepared to do everything we could for our son. We hoped and prayed that he would survive, or that we would at least have a few short moments or hours with him following his birth.”

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“When they got him out he wasn’t breathing,” Cheryl said, according to WPDE. “He was rushed to the NICU. I was told they were doing everything they could for him, but that it wasn’t looking good.”

“They tried to get him breathing again with an infant resuscitation mask but were unsuccessful. Our sweet baby boy was gone. During this time I had been taken for two blood transfusions due to extreme blood loss. A few hours later I woke up having to face the sad reality, Quinn hadn’t made it.”

Touched by the hospital’s efforts to help them, the couple started a fundraising campaign to help other parents in similar situations by raising money for better photography equipment and a “cuddle cot,” which helps extend the time parents can spend with their little ones before saying their final goodbyes.

But one of the ways Cheryl chose to remember her child was to have his ashes put into a special necklace.

On Jan. 4, while she and Jon were out running errands and looking at houses, the necklace vanished.

“It wasn’t until after we were home later that day that I reached up for my necklace and realized it was gone,” she shared on Facebook, along with a detailed list of the places they visited. “I have contacted each location we were at that day and have had no luck in finding it.”

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“It breaks my heart knowing I lost this and would appreciate anyone that would be willing to share this in hopes that I can get it back. It would be of no value to anyone else, but to me it is beyond priceless.”

Thankfully, just over a week after making her desperate plea online, someone found the keepsake at one of the houses the Knabenschuhs had visited and was able to get it back to Cheryl on Sunday.

“I am beyond happy!!!” Cherly said, according to WPDE. “I seriously have no words!!”

“The outpouring love, kindness and prayers we have received from people all over the world has been absolutely amazing!! I haven’t been able to stop crying today, total tears of joy!!”

Thanks to the power of social media and a caring and observant person, this mother has her precious necklace back where it belongs.

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking