One boy’s power to touch many lives

By LAURA BROOKHART / Staff Writer

Some family stories are worthy of sharing as they have the power to tell us more about the people who live around us, perhaps under the radar, but who may touch our hearts when we stop to listen.

This was certainly true of my conversation with Morgan Earley in April. Morgan Earley spent many years teaching high school math and history, but in 2005, he changed careers to become a nurse.

His wife, Debbie, who works for Regions, is a breast cancer survivor who has been cancer-free since 2004.

Both Morgan and Debbie desired a family, but they lost a baby girl at 22 weeks in 1999.

Their son, Noah, arrived in 2000. Noah is a special young man who has Down’s Syndrome, as written about previously.

Noah has had his share of illness, such as an early bout with childhood leukemia.

In 2015, Morgan realized Noah was sick, observing his oxygen levels were 40/50. Noah was sent in an ambulance to Children’s Hospital was placed on ECMO (Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation) and spent ten days in IC.

“I thought he might not live through the first night,” Morgan recalls.

“Now Noah doesn’t put on airs and he doesn’t mind going to the hospital,” Morgan adds.

Another time when Noah was in the ER for drainage of an abscess, the doctor told him he was ready to go home and Noah exclaimed, “No, no. Stay hospital!”

Morgan had to bribe him with a trip to McDonald’s to persuade him to leave.

Morgan Earley also shared that he was very moved after reading “A Championship Season” by Gene Stallings. When the family went to a book signing when Noah was two, Gene Stallings looked up and immediately rose from his chair to come over to talk with them.

Their second son, Aiden, a 4th grader at HIS, likes computers and games.

“Aiden knows he is adopted and understands he grew in someone else’s stomach,” Morgan related, “but we know God meant for him to be our son.”

He and Debbie brought Aiden home from the hospital after connecting with someone from the birth mother’s family via their home church, Hunter Street Baptist.

The family enjoys trips to the beach and Morgan says they hope to someday retire there. When on vacation, the family is very social and especially likes going to The Hangout.

“Noah loves music and loves to dance. We took him to City Stages as a child. At the Hangout, women of all ages—from young girls to grandmothers—will be lined up to dance with him.”