Georgia National Guard soldiers give help to Iraqi baby - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Georgia National Guard soldiers give help to Iraqi baby

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December 30, 2005

A young life gives some Georgia soldiers a new cause to fight for in Iraq. During a raid looking for terrorists in Baghdad, Georgia National Guard troops instead found a baby girl named Noor. She's dying from a birth defect called spina bifida. The soldiers made it their goal to make sure she lived.

Under the loud noises of the war on terror and the thick smoke from explosions, some Georgia soldiers found a 3-month-old infant fighting her own war. "She has what's called spina bifida," says Senator Saxby Chambliss.

Baby Noor was born with the defect that gave her only weeks to live. "She could lose the use of her legs for the rest of her life but if nothing were done, she would simply die. The Iraqi doctors had told her she would not survive," says Chambliss. But several soldiers found her surviving in the midst of their duties to end insurgency.

"They arrested a bunch of terrorists or suspected terrorists in the home and at the same time, found this little girl and had enough compassion for this child in the midst of being a professional soldier," says Chambliss. They then made it their number one duty to get some help for the baby and that involved getting her to the United States as quickly as possible.

"They knew they were going to need some visas and what not but had no idea how to go through the whole process and they simply asked us for help," says Chambliss. That's when Senator Saxby Chambliss' office stepped in. What would normally be a six month process was done in only days but the biggest and most dangerous hurdle was getting her and her family out of their city with an ongoing war and insurgency.

"Came into the home and said look, you've got to get your stuff together because we're taking you out of here and we're going to help this little girl with her medical problem," says Chambliss. The soldiers, along with Baby Noor, her father and grandmother braved dangerous roads to Camp Victory but it was a road to hope.

"They're going to be well taken care of and this is a great exhibition of what's the very best about America," says Chambliss. The family is now grateful to America and it's people and will give the baby a special name to show their gratitude.

"They're actually changing the name of this little girl to Georgia so she's going to have a special mark on her," says Chambliss.

Though she may never walk again, she'll always have the knowledge that some soldiers went beyond their call of duty to make sure she has life, a war won by both sides.

Once in Atlanta, the baby will be taken care of at Scottish Rite Hospital. An organization called Child Spring International arranged the medical help. The surgery will be performed free of charge by Dr. Rodger Hudgins. The family will stay with a family in Douglasville.

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