Bryce and Beau Edwards are rock stars. And like any great musical duo, the 14-year-old twins from Fulton, Missouri, have an amazing story to tell.
In 2005, Bryce and Beau were born at just 26 weeks. They each weighed about two pounds and were transferred to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at MU Health Care’s Children’s Hospital.
“From the moment Beau and Bryce arrived in the NICU, nurses, doctors and support staff surrounded them and worked quickly to save them,” said Julie Edwards, the twins’ mom. “Beau needed emergency surgery, and Bryce had to be intubated immediately.”
Bryce had suffered a life-threatening stroke on both sides of his brain, and Beau developed a dangerous disease called necrotizing enterocolitis. Both babies would require multiple surgeries in order to survive.
“When Bryce’s doctor told me his diagnosis and prognosis, he had tears in his eyes,” Julie said. “I could see how real and how hard the situation was.”
If Bryce survived, doctors were unsure whether he would ever walk, talk or even breathe on his own. Meanwhile, several of Beau’s organs were failing because of severe infections, and his care team worried he would die within days.
But the Edwards twins defied the odds. After several months of treatment in the NICU, they were healthy enough to head home.
"I thank God and the doctors that I am here today,” Beau said. “I believe in miracles."
Over the years, Bryce and Beau have continued to regularly visit Children’s Hospital for follow-up procedures and care. Bryce’s stroke caused cerebral palsy, so he undergoes physical therapy at MU Health Care’s Children’s Therapy Center.
“Children’s Hospital is basically my second family,” Bryce said. “They saved my life, and they’ve saved a lot of other kids’ lives. I just love them so much.”
Outside of their medical visits, the brothers play together in an aptly named rock band: Double Vision. Bryce plays bass and drums. Beau sings and plays electric guitar. Both cite Ozzy Osbourne, Elton John, Guns N’ Roses and Metallica as influences.
“We play mostly classic rock, but a little bit of country and a little grunge, too,” Bryce said.
As dedicated supporters of Children’s Hospital, the Edwards twins regularly attend and perform at Children’s Miracle Network fundraising events. Children’s Miracle Network is a national organization that helps children’s hospitals raise money for lifesaving equipment and life-improving programs. Since 1985, the organization has helped MU Health Care raise more than $16 million. Funds have been used to purchase ambulances, virtual reality goggles, state-of-the-art NICU beds and baby warmers, and much more. They also support programs at Children’s Hospital, including Child Life and music therapy.
The Edwards twins were named the 2020 Children’s Miracle Network Champion Children for Children’s Hospital. That means they will be especially active in sharing their story and songs throughout the next year.
“Bryce and I wouldn’t be here without Children’s Hospital and Children’s Miracle Network,” Beau said. “That’s why it’s so important for us to be involved and to give back.”