New Carlisle couple turns grief into organization that helps local dads, families

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NEW CARLISLE, Ind. – One item at a time, New Carlisle mom Samantha Cartwright packs toiletries and comfort items into bright-colored bags.

“The concept is for like an overnight type bag,” said Samantha Cartwright. 

As she places each item, she remembers August 18, 2019.

“It was very hard,” said Samantha. “He was our first child.”

It’s the day she and her husband, Cliff, went to a local hospital believing Samantha, who was eight months pregnant at the time, was going into labor early.

They packed an overnight bag for Samantha but not one for Cliff.

“We were excited and it was the thought process that, ‘Ok I’ll get my bag and once he’s here you can come back home and get your shower and get your clothes’” said Samantha.

However, the enthusiasm for their son Mavrick soon turned into grief.

“We lost our son,” said Samantha. “He was stillbirth.”

Heartbroken, the couple wanted to go home but had to stay in the hospital for three days.

“He did not have anything,” said Samantha. “Didn’t have a toothbrush, no deodorant.”

Samantha says most of the attention was on her during that time leaving Cliff to take care of himself.

“He felt like forgotten about,” said Samantha.

That’s why the couple is now starting up MAC Pack.

“Stillbirth and infant loss isn’t talked about a lot,” said Samantha. “It’s kind of a taboo subject that people don’t know how to talk about and it happens and so we wanted to be able to show our support and let people know that it’s ok to talk about it.”

It’s a state registered organization that gives care packages to Michiana dads experiencing a pregnancy or infant loss.

The idea started shortly after Mavrick’s death. The couple hopes the organization can gain it’s 501c3 non-profit status soon and partner with area hospitals to distribute the packages.

“We would’ve never thought that something like this would’ve happened to us,” said Samantha.

They believe one MAC Pack at a time, it will let Michiana dads know that someone cares about them and give their son Mavrick a purpose.

“We’re taking something tragic and letting his memory live on letting him live on through what we’re doing,” said Samantha. “Even though he wasn’t here laughing and crying and playing, he was still here. He was still apart of us and he’ll never be forgotten.”

The Cartwrights say while they wait to form partnerships with local hospitals, families who would like a MAC Pack can request one by going to their Facebook page.

They’re also looking for people to donate items such as toiletries, snack items, drinks, stress release items, gift cards to local restaurants, and travel bags. Monetary donations are also accepted.

To sign up or donate, click here.

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