LITTLETON, Colo. — A Colorado family has been waiting nearly two years to take their daughter, Charlie, home from the hospital.
We first introduced you to Shawna Maas and Kevin Konkol, and their 23-month-old twin daughters, Charlie and Olivia, back in December just before Christmas.
For Maas and Konkol, it all started with a surprise pregnancy.
“We’re like, ‘Oh, we’re pregnant. That’s amazing,’” Maas said. “And then they’re like, ‘There’s one baby. There are two babies.’ And they’re like, ‘Let’s look for a third.’ I was like, ‘There better not be a third in there.’”
All of a sudden, they were pregnant with twins. Then came the birth.
“We had two premature infants at 27 weeks back in March of 2021,” Maas said. “When you’re that early, you have a higher chance of complications.”
While Olivia was small, she was just fine. Charlie, on the other hand, had many health issues.
“Charlie ended up having brain bleeds,” Maas said. “Her lungs were severely underdeveloped. And then later, she was diagnosed with cerebral palsy, as well.”
Days turned into weeks in the hospital, and 23 months later, Charlie is still at Children’s Hospital of Colorado.
“There are two rules in this family. One is if Charlie fights, we fight,” Konkol said back in December. “And the second is we all go home together. And that’s why we’ve been here for 20 months.”
At the time, Maas and Konkol were down on their luck and needed a larger vehicle to get Charlie home with all her medical equipment. Denver7 and our viewers stepped up in a big way through Denver7 Gives.
As we explained back in December, they needed a car — a van, to be precise — to give them enough room to take Charlie home. Fast-forward to February, and we found ourselves at Peak Kia in Littleton.
“It’s a 2019 Dodge Caravan,” said Sean Simpson, sales manager at Peak Kia. “This is the car we knew would fit them the best, so it’s what we came up with.”
The viewers of Denver7 gave more than $20,000 so Maas and Konkol could finally get a van.
“We’re so grateful,” Maas said. “It’s amazing and exactly what we need.”
There was also a little money left over, so Denver7 Gives presented Maas and Konkol with a few gift cards, paid their rent for one month and paid six months of their auto insurance on their new van.
“It’s surreal,” Maas said. “I can’t believe it’s actually happening.”
Kindness and generosity perfectly placed with a grateful family.
“We are really grateful,” Konkol said. “Thank you. This means a lot. It’s going to change our life.”
Maas says for the first time since the twins were born, she’s able to leave the hospital to run errands without waiting on Kevin to return from work with their only car.
“It’s just giving us a lot of freedom,” she said. “And soon, it’s going to allow us to finally take Charlie home.”
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