A mother is facing deportation while in the US with her critically ill child. The thought of leaving her sick child in an Atlanta hospital alone is unthinkable and she is asking for help.
Petra Gooding’s seven-year-old daughter Niamh is battling Stage 4 Neuroblastoma at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. The mother and daughter came to children’s from Barbadoes last November — their private insurance paying for Niamh’s treatment. They applied to extend their visas because Niamh is so ill and, having just recently received a bone marrow transplant, unable to be moved.
“They gave my daughter the six-month extension but did not give me,” said Gooding.
Hospital staff thought it was a clerical error, Gooding appealed, but was denied again. She must leave the country by September 2, next Thursday.
The little girl who loved to dance, swing and swim is in total isolation in the transplant unit fighting life threatening complications from her treatment, the last thing she needs is to lose her lifeline, her mother.
“Every time she goes through a difficult stage in her treatment she would tell me mommy is this closer to getting back home with our family, is this closer, yeah,” Gooding added holding back tears.
Gooding is pleading with whomever decided a seven-year-old could stay alone.
“I would ask them to please, someone in there have a heart to help me somewhere, somehow I understand there are laws and I never wanted to break them I just want to be able to have my daughter treated so we can go back home.”