Miracle baby of the Aurora tragedy
By Kate Snow , NBC News
AURORA, Colo. – He’s the tiny miracle after the tragedy of Aurora.
Hugo Jackson Medley was born at 7:11 a.m. local time on Tuesday, according to University of Colorado Hospital spokesman Dan Weaver. Both mother and child are doing well.
His mother, Katie Medley, escaped the Colorado movie theater attack uninjured, but her husband, Caleb, is in the same hospital in a medically-induced coma fighting for his life.
High school sweethearts High school sweethearts, Katie and Caleb Medley started dating during their senior year in the small town of Florence, Colo., according to their close friend Michael West, who has become their family spokesman.
“You could just tell that out of everyone in the world, these two were meant for each other,” West wrote on a website dedicated to Caleb that he created to raise money to cover his friend’s medical bills. As of Tuesday afternoon, the website has had 2,600 donors who have given about $90,000.
In eighth grade, Caleb, now 23, decided he wanted to be a standup comedian. So after he and Katie, 21, got married they moved to Denver, where he could chase his dream.
In an Internet video titled “Caleb Saves the Internet: Saving the One Nighter,” he chronicles life on the road as a struggling comic. He jokes about staying in a seedy motel room with a busted deadbolt and stains on the wall. But Caleb was making progress. Last Wednesday night, he performed stand up at the New Faces Contest at Comedy Works South in Denver, according to the Denver Post. He did well enough to advance to the next round of a comedy festival.
It was to be a big week for the couple. Not only was Caleb getting comedy gigs, but he was about to become a father. Katie, a veterinary student, was nine months pregnant and her doctor planned to induce labor on Monday, July 23.
One last date night Katie and Caleb decided to treat themselves to one last night out before they needed a babysitter. Even though she was nine months pregnant, they were huge Batman fans and they were not going to miss opening night.
“They had Batman apparel on. They waited for this movie for over a year,” said David Sanchez, Katie Medley’s father.
“They were having the normal opening night movie experience,” their friend Michael West wrote, recounting a conversation he had with Katie. “They stood anxiously in line, spent too much on popcorn and soda, suffered through the movie trailers and watched the beginning of the movie. That is when evil struck.”
“I thought it was a prank at first or someone playing along with the movie,” Katie told him, West writes. “Then he opened fire.”
Caleb was shot in the face. He was put in the back of a police cruiser and driven to University of Colorado hospital. The website says he has lost his right eye, suffered brain damage and is in a medically-induced coma.
Katie’s father, Sanchez, was at the Arapahoe County courthouse Monday to see the man he blames for ruining what was supposed to be a joyous time for the family. He said his daughter had asked him to come since she was in no state to attend herself.
“When it’s your own daughter and she escaped death by just mere seconds, I would say, it really makes you angry,” he told a group of reporters outside the courthouse where the shooting suspect James Eagan Holmes made a brief appearance Monday.
Asked about his son-in-law, Caleb, he said, “He’s in critical but stable condition, so we’re praying for him. I think the main concern is him right now, and the baby being born.”
Like many of the young 20-somethings at the movies that terrible night, the Medleys have no health insurance, according to their friend West.
“Caleb and his family have no insurance, and these hospital bills are going to be well into the hundreds if not thousands if not millions. Caleb and Katie will be struggling with these hospital bills for the rest of their lives,” West wrote on the website.