Mother who underwent C-section despite heart problems to save unborn baby passes away after delivery

27-year-old Charlene Flores had undergone a heart surgery last summer to address an infection and was at greater risk during pregnancy due to a weakened heart


                            Mother who underwent C-section despite heart problems to save unborn baby passes away after delivery

A California mother who underwent an emergency cesarean section so her unborn child could stand a chance at life tragically died just a few minutes later. The community in Fresno is now rallying together to raise donations to pay for the funeral of 27-year-old Charlene Flores.

According to the Fresno Bee, Charlene was admitted to the Community Regional Medical Center in downtown Fresno in the early hours of October 24, almost a month and a half before her due date, because of pregnancy pains that she had started experiencing.

Flores passed away minutes after giving birth to her daughter (Source: GoFundMe)
Flores passed away minutes after giving birth to her daughter (Source: GoFundMe)

Despite being in extreme pain, Charlene would send her husband Elesandro Flores Jr. away so he could ensure that their daughters Lanyssa Vasquez, 12; Kiara Flores, 12; Adriene Flores, 8, could make it to school on time. But soon after, she would call him back. "She FaceTimes me and says I need you here right now," he told KFSN in an interview.

That would be the last time he would speak to his wife. As soon as he made his way back to the hospital, he was informed that Charlene was bleeding internally and that she would need to undergo an emergency cesarean section if there was to be any hope for their unborn child.

The 27-year-old had a long history of heart problems. She had just undergone a heart surgery last summer to address an infection and the weakened heart had subsequently put her at greater risk during pregnancy. Despite her condition, she authorized the c-section. As soon as the surgery was done, Elesandro says he heard a code-blue alert.

"So the doctors come back to me in the room saying your baby's being worked on, your wife's asleep," he told KFSN. "And then (I) heard code blue. This lady comes to our door area and says, 'We need you, doctor,' and the doctor rushes back there. And then 20 minutes later, the rest of the doctors and nurses flow in the room and tell me that my wife didn't make it but my daughter's in an incubator getting her treatment."

The couple had already decided on the name of the newest member of the family, whether boy or girl, and daughter Quinn Neveah Flores was welcomed into the world. Because she was born prematurely, she will be staying in the NICU for another month or so, and Elesandro says her condition is improving every day. 

"I told my kids, you're (an) extension of your mother," he said. "You guys are women, and you guys are going to be my life, you guys are going to take that role, you guys are going to take care of me, and I know you will, and they have."

Charlene leaves behind her four daughters, and the family has set up a GoFundMe page to help raise donations. A description reads, "Charlene Castro Flores, a beloved mother, wife, daughter, relative, and friend has sadly departed this world. Before leaving she left us a parting gift of her everlasting love for us through her and her husband’s miracle baby Quinn Nevaeh Flores. We ask in this time of grieving you keep all of those she knew in your prayers." The page has crossed its goal of $20,000 within the span of eight days.

The Fresno Bee reports that the 27-year-old's funeral will be held at 9:10 am on Saturday, November 3, at the Chapel of Light at 1620 W Belmont Avenue.