The McFarlin Family Gives Back in Honor of World Down Syndrome Day

Recently, the McFarlin family repaid the kindness shown to them five years ago at our House near Egleston when they catered meals for the families staying with us during the COVID-19 pandemic in honor of their daughter and World Down Syndrome Day.

In 2015, the McFarlins stayed with us when daughter, Locklyn, 1, was scheduled for an atrioventricular septal defect heart surgery. In Locklyn’s pre-op, her doctors discovered she had pulmonary hypertension and wasn’t healthy enough for surgery. The next couple of months were spent improving Locklyn’s health.

“We really enjoyed being in the comforts of a home,” says mom, Lindy McFarlin. “The Atlanta Ronald McDonald House gave us much needed respite time.”

Locklyn proved to be a warrior. “While connected to oxygen for 24 hours a day, a gastrostomy-jejunostomy tube 18 hours a day, and medications every six hours, she still learned to walk,” Lindy, says. “That’s when we knew she was a fighter.”

Locklyn was healthy enough for surgery in December 2015, and continued to show her can-do attitude through it all.

“Locklyn is like a sense of peace and serenity for me,” says Lindy adding her family stayed 58 days at the Atlanta Ronald McDonald House. They went home in January 2016.

Two years later, it was time for her second surgery to repair her mitral valve. Locklyn underwent her second heart surgery in March 2018, and spent most of her time in the CICU or the Childrens Surgical Unit. Her family stayed at the hospital as much as they could, but when she was transferred to the CICU her family stayed at our House near Egleston.

“Atlanta RMHC really helped with Locklyn’s recovery because they helped keep us energized and positive, which allowed us to be strong for her,” Lindy says. “Locklyn got strength from us throughout her recovery and we got strength from Atlanta RMHC.”

Locklyn will start kindergarten in August. She enjoys dancing, anything Disney related, and being a big sister to, 7-month-old, Collier Mae. “Locklyn loves unconditionally and continues to teach me to have grace every single day,” Lindy says.