What should have been the happiest day for the a Jersey City family welcoming their baby girl turned out to be the most tragic.
Melinda Segunda Pritchett, 37 -- originally of New London, CT -- went in for a routine induction on Friday, Sept. 4, but required an emergency C-section due to a fetal heart rate complication, a GoFundMe page says.
Just after her baby girl was born, Melinda went into cardiac arrest. And, after hours of trying to save her, the new mom passed away.
Surviving her is her daughter, Adelina Joy Maribel, and her husband -- whom friends describe as her soulmate -- Joseph Kuziomko.
More than $26,500 had been raised on a GoFundMe for Kuziomko and baby Adelina, of Jersey City, NJ, as of Tuesday morning.
"Melinda created so much joy in this world, and had such a way of bringing people together," said the campaign, launched by a team of five people. "She truly changed our lives, for the better and forever."
Born in New London, CT, Melinda joined the U.S. Public Health Service Commission Corps in April of 2018, and received at least five military recognitions.
She had recently been promoted to 2nd Lieutenant as a supervisory nurse practitioner and patient disability compliance manager, her obituary says.
She loved to dance and was being remembered as a caring person with an infectious smile.
"We hope to support Joseph and Adelina in any way we can, and to continue shining the light Melinda brought to each of our lives."
Visitation will be from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at the Fulton-Theroux Funeral Service in New London, CT on Thursday. A graveside service will be at Elm Grove Cemetery in Mystic, CT, at 11:30 a.m. on Friday.
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