For her strength in facing challenges, her diligence in advocating for her children, and her sense of getting justice for families throughout Tennessee, Tennessee Justice Center honors Ms. Shannon Redmond as a 2020 Mother of the Year.
Ms. Redmond is the loving mother of three children: a son who is in the military, Joseph, and two daughters, Bethany and Ashtyn, who were both born with life-threatening medical conditions. Bethany is 18, nonverbal, and uses a wheelchair; she loves music, her “jewels”, and her miraculous ladybug. Ashtyn is 15 and has normal teenage interests including her cellphone, listening to music, and hanging out with friends. She also loves swimming and is great with animals large and small.
The Redmond family has tackled a series of financial, health, and emotional hardships in order to provide the best care possible for Bethany and Ashtyn. Ms. Redmond even put herself through nursing school in order to personally manage the care for her children. Under her care, Bethany’s health improved and she was able to transfer from 24-hour skilled nursing and monthly doctor visits (due to her continuous feeding tube) to a transition to full oral feeding and drinking. Under Ms. Redmond’s care, Bethany also had no doctor’s visits due to illness in 7 years. In order to maintain her nursing career and provide financially for her family, Ms. Redmond also paid for caregivers out of pocket. However, her caregivers were not always dependable.
As her daughters got older, new health concerns arose and costs to provide care increased. Juggling her career, the family’s financial situation, and her daughters’ health care, the emotional, mental, and physical stress became overwhelming. Ms. Redmond lost three different jobs due to caregiver issues, and the financial situation of the family changed.
Ms. Redmond recognized she and her family needed support and began reaching out to state and national organizations to learn about the options to provide the best care for her children. In 2019, Ms. Redmond was able to enroll her daughters into TennCare and begin getting more comprehensive care for them. When one of her daughters was denied nursing hours that were requested by a doctor’s order, Ms. Redmond and TJC filed an appeal and were able to get her the full nursing hours requested. Ms. Redmond continues to advocate for more thorough care for her youngest daughter.
We are inspired by Ms. Redmond’s diligence and are excited to honor her as a TJC 2020 Mother of the Year.
Photo Credit: Lisa Link of KPL Photography