So Heartbreaking: Fresno Firefighter Loses Wife Shortly After Birth of Their Twin Girls

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Oh, my heart. I just hate reading stories like this one. A Fresno firefighter is reeling after the death of his beloved wife. Nick Reeder and Amanda Sawyer were thrilled to welcome twin daughters on April 9. Kelce and Kaia were born via c-section without incident, healthy and strong. But shortly after the babies arrived, Amanda turned to Nick and told him she wasn’t feeling well. She passed out, and sadly, died within an hour after the delivery of her daughters. Now Nick is trying to pick up the pieces, and figure out life as a single father of five, without his partner by his side.

Fresno firefighter Nick Reeder was excited for his twin girls to make their grand entrance. He had no idea that tragedy would strike just minutes after they were born.

fresno firefighter

Image: GoFundMe / Tragedy in Child Birth

Nick and Amanda met four years ago, and their connection was immediate. Nick is a fire captain, and has worked for Fresno County Fire and CalFire for 14 years, and Amanda was a doting wife and mother. She kept their home and tended to their three children from previous relationships: Caleb, 11, Anistyn, 6, and Layla, 3. Early in 2017, the couple found out they were expecting twins, and they were both over the moon. They tied the knot in November, and prepared for the arrival of their daughters.

fresno firefighter

Image: GoFundMe / Tragedy in Child Birth

On April 9, the couple arrived at the hospital for the scheduled c-section. Everything went well, and Kelce and Kaia were born two minutes apart. Nick says, “She bopped them on the nose and had a few special moments with them.” But within minutes, Amanda turned to Nick and told him she wasn’t feeling well. She lost consciousness, and doctors and nurses swarmed the room to revive her. Tragically, she died within the hour.

“She was my rock.”

Now Nick is left to somehow pick up the pieces and continue on as a single father of five, including newborn twins. His community has rallied around him, creating a Meal Train and a GoFundMe to help the family through this agonizingly difficult time. He’s sharing their story in the hopes that it raises awareness about maternal mortality. Says Nick, “This could happen to anybody.”

The community came together to honor Amanda and celebrate her life. Nick says about his wife, “I wish I were half the person she was … I was so lucky to spend four years with that woman.” Sending so much love to the Reeder family.

(Image: GoFundMe / Tragedy in Child Birth)