Colts player Ryan Kelly and his wife Emma have announced their infant daughter has died.
According to Kelly, the baby died on 17 December, with the football player paying tribute to his daughter in the accompanying post.
“Nothing made me happier than being your dad. You gave your mom and I that gift,” Kelly wrote. “You were simply a miracle and always will be.“I’m sorry you never got to open those sweet eyes and see us or take your first steps but you have angel wings now.”
Kelly also said that the couple found comfort knowing that their daughter was being “loved on by your great-grandparents”.
“Thank you for watching over us and your future siblings. I’ll forever wonder who you’d be today,” he concluded. “Until we meet again my sweet girl, I love you.”
In a separate post, Emma revealed that she was 19 weeks pregnant with the couple’s daughter when they “learned her little heart just stopped for reasons unknown”.
According to Emma, who acknowledged that “there is no easy way for us to say what we’re about to say,” she was just one week from the halfway mark of her pregnancy when the couple learned the news.
“Women have a one per cent chance of losing their baby this far along, and yet somehow, here we are,” she wrote.
In the post, Emma explained that the couple learned that there was no heartbeat after rushing to the hospital “upon discovering a little bleeding” on Wednesday.
“After learning she wasn’t with us anymore, I was told there was no other choice but to deliver our baby next,” she continued, adding that she and her husband spent the next 48 hours in the hospital.
According to Emma, she was intially “so angry at first that I had to deliver her”. However, she noted that she later realised that it was the “biggest blessing out of this nightmare,” because it meant that she and Kelly had the “opportunity to hold our little Saint, Mary Kate, before officially saying goodbye to her”.
“One of our Angel nurses, Kalyn, told us this would be the hardest thing we’ll ever do in our life, and I pray to God she’s right,” she wrote. “Because this feels worse than hard, it feels so evil and cruel. The pain and brokenness is so unbearable for Ryan and I we don’t even know where to begin.”
The couple announced they were expecting on 31 October, with Emma sharing a photo of the pair dressed in Halloween costumes and holding a sign that read: “Baby Kelly 2022.”
Following the couple’s heartwrenching announcement, fans and fellow professional sports players have shared their condolences.