Precious record of baby stolen

Last updated 10:10 26/09/2012
Virginia Gray

PRECIOUS MEMORIES: Kane's daughter Virginia has biliary atresia - burglars made off with the photos of her which could be all the family is left with.

FAMILY TREASURES: Kane and his daughters Georgia and Alabama.

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A burglary has a father of three near breaking point.

The home of Waterview resident Kane, who does not want his surname revealed, was burgled last Wednesday.

Thieves took heirloom jewellery, an Xbox and precious memories of his severely ill daughter.

The family has been in and out of Auckland's Starship Children's Hospital since its youngest member, Virginia, was diagnosed with biliary atresia at just three weeks old.

A jaundiced and undersized five-month-old, Virginia has a malfunctioning liver and was born without a gall bladder.

''At five weeks old she had liver surgery so they opened her up and tried to create some little bypasses with what tubes she had in there - it is kind of advanced plumbing,'' Kane said.

''She had a few weeks where things were making the right moves, and then it just went backwards really rapidly. So out of her five months she has only been home for about four weeks.''

The cause of biliary atresia is unknown, but one of the only effective treatments is a liver transplant.

The infant's mother Joanna virtually lives at Starship hospital, while Kane cares for their two other daughters Alabama, seven, and Georgia, six, as well as trying to juggle work.

Virginia took a turn for the worse early last week and began coughing up large amounts of blood.

''The doctors whipped her down to intensive care and paralysed her into full sedation. When I walked in there I was close to falling over, it was a horrendous sight,'' Kane said. ''But they managed to fill her up with other blood proteins which clot the blood.'' 

He said the medical staff's quick thinking saved his baby's life.

Things went downhill further the following day when thieves broke into the family's home and stole the computer storing photographs documenting Virginia's life.

''Out of all of this, the most important thing to us is getting the photos back off the computer because it's still touch-and-go with Virginia at the moment, and moving forward, that might be all we have left,'' Kane said.

He hopes somebody will recognise the images and return them to the family. 

''This has me almost at breaking point,'' he said.

Senior Sergeant Ross Endicott-Davies, of Avondale, said police have no leads.

''It is really important that if people see anything suspicious happening in their area, they report it in the first instance.

''It's important that people get together as a neighbourhood and start looking after each other,'' he said.

 Endicott-Davies said there was still hope the family would get its treasured photographs back.

''But it depends if the burglars have a conscience, and being burglars they probably don't have too much of a conscience in the first place.''

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- Auckland Now


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