Baby Loses Fight for Life After Likely Contracting Virus From a Kiss

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — An Iowa infant whose fight for life after coming in contact with someone with a cold sore made international headlines has died, according to WHO-TV.

“Our princess Mariana Reese Sifrit gained her angel wings at 8:41 am this morning in her daddy’s arms and her mommy right beside her,” Nicole Sifrit posted on her Facebook page Tuesday morning. “In her 18 days of life she made a huge impact on the world and we hope with Mariana’s Story we save numerous newborns life.”

Mariana was born a health baby girl on July 1st. Six days later, her parents left their wedding early to take her to Blank Children’s Hospital when she stopped eating and couldn’t wake up.

Doctors told Nicole and her husband, Shane, that Mariana had contracted Meningitis HSV1, likely from someone with a cold sore who touched Mariana, who then touched her mouth.

Nicole shared a story on Facebook July 8 about another baby who contracted the same virus, writing, "If you gather anything from it DON'T LET ANYONE kiss your baby. This story is what I'm living through right now."

“I always thought this stuff happens and it’s a shame and never thought it would happen to me,” Nicole told WHO last week, “I was not prepared at all. Keep your babies isolated. Don’t let just anyone come visit them. Make sure they are constantly washing their hands. Don’t let people kiss your baby and make sure they ask before they pick up your baby.”

A GoFundMe account has been created to help with Mariana's medical bills.


  • Catherine

    I’m so sorry for the loss of this beautiful little one. This is not crap virus is very dangerous to newborn babies, and if I read this correctly it does not say don’t kiss your kids. Newborns are especially susceptible to contagious illness, something that would barely effect an older child or adult can be extremely dangerous. Kiss babies on the back of the head away from their mouth and hands, you do not have to refrain from kissing your own children. When mine were newborn I kept them at home for at least six weeks to avoid any contact, today I see brand new babies in the mall, no hat or blanket in crowds that can be carrying anything. I suffered meningitis a few years back and it was horrible, I survived many do not and I still have no clue where I was exposed. Bless this family with the peace of knowing she is in the lords hands.

      • Lloyd Schmucatelli

        I know. It’s sad. It’s just that this will probably spiral into some overreacting BS trend of hyper sensitive moms not letting anyone kids their kids.

      • so_sad

        Indeed something is missing from this story…else this would happen WAY more often! The baby can get sick with this too coming down the birth canal and/or if the mother is infected or is a carrier.

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