When Susan Goodrich died after giving birth to her son, friends stepped in to help in the best way they knew -- by breastfeeding her baby.
More than two dozen women organised themselves into a rota to nurture baby Moses in the way his mother, a university professor, had planned on doing.
Susan died on January 11 from an amniotic fluid embolism after giving birth to Charles Moses Martin Goodrich, leaving her husband Robbie to raise him and their their two-year-old daughter in Michigan.
The couple were both strong supporters of breastfeeding and when family friend Laura Janowski, who was already feeding her four-month-old daughter, offered to feed Moses too, Goodrich said he accepted the offer instinctively.His wife's best friend, Nicoletta Fraire, organised a team which now numbers 25 women. They either stop by the house to nurse Moses or drop off pumped breast milk. They have bonded and become a special community.
Goodrich said: "They don't just drop by for five minutes and leave. These are loving, nurturing women. They're proud of what they're doing. They're proud of the community, and they're proud of their new micro-community."
Carrie Fiocchi is one of the mothers and told the Savannah Morning News in Georgia that although she realises Moses isn't her baby, the bond is inescapable. "He definitely feels like family."
Feeding another woman's baby was also a bittersweet experience for team member Kyra Fillmore who told the paper: "I felt like I was doing this for Susan.
"It's really emotional because, while it's nice to hold a newborn, I think to myself, 'It shouldn't be me.'"
Those bittersweet feelings are also shared by Goodrich.
"It's a reminder of the loss. They're doing something that Susan would do," he said.
Although still grieving for his wife he also tries hard to put on a brave face and admits he does his crying in private.
"Every moment of joy has sorrow in it," he said.
While wet nursing isn't a new idea it is unusual to hear of it these days and, with our poor breast feeding rates in the UK, you wonder if something similar could happen here.
When I was breast feeding my babies, who all refused to take the bottle, one of my worries was what would happen to them should something happen to me.
What do you think, would you step in to help a baby in need?
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