Quads come home

Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Azariah Kalume is wheeled to the neonatal intensive care unit by nurses and respiratory specialists at Trinity Hospital after arriving in Augusta late Monday.

After a 15-hour travel day, the quadruplets have arrived in Augusta.


Deborah Kalume and her four babies, who were born to a surrogate mother in California on May 17, arrived by ambulance and a private vehicle at Trinity Hospital of Augusta about 11:30 p.m. Monday.

Azariah and Jeremiah, the two boys who still require hospital care, were born about 11 weeks premature and have underdeveloped lungs.

Trinity has a neonatal intensive care unit that provides around-the-clock care and supervision, said Rachel McKie, the hospital's spokeswoman.

The other two babies, Kristianna and Abraham, will go to the Kalumes' home in Warrenton.

There was a delay in Sacramento, Calif., while the medical team waited on oxygen tanks for the two boys. Consequently, the family missed its flight and had to wait five hours to board a different flight to Atlanta, Ms. McKie said.

"It was quite a trip today," Mrs. Kalume said, as the weary infants were ushered into the hospital by a waiting medical team. "I didn't think we'd ever get here.

"They are well-traveled already," she said.

The babies are 2 months old today.

Mrs. Kalume has been staying in Sacramento since January.

"We're so happy," said John Kalume. "It's a miracle."

Reach Rob Pavey at (706) 868-1222, ext. 119, or rob.pavey@augustachronicle.com.