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New-mom Caitlin also has a new heart. ‘Please keep praying!’

Gulfport resident Caitlin Johnson Irwin, diagnosed with congestive heart failure, holds newborn son John Patrick Irwin III while her husband, John Irwin Jr., looks on. Caitlin, 27, was in surgery Wednesday morning to receive a new heart.
Gulfport resident Caitlin Johnson Irwin, diagnosed with congestive heart failure, holds newborn son John Patrick Irwin III while her husband, John Irwin Jr., looks on. Caitlin, 27, was in surgery Wednesday morning to receive a new heart.

Caitlin Johnson Irwin, the young Gulfport mother who went into congestive heart failure in late March after giving birth to her son early, underwent surgery Wednesday morning to receive a new heart.

Irwin, 27, learned a potential donor was found Tuesday night. After testing confirmed a match, Irwin headed into surgery about 5 a.m.

Her mother, Martha Johnson, posted on Facebook about 6 a.m. “... thank God for answering our prayers. Keep Caitlin and us in your prayers. We will update later this afternoon.”

Johnson posted again just after noon, saying the surgery went well. “Please keep praying!” she wrote.

Irwin’s mother had posted Tuesday evening about the potential donor, saying, “Things should start happening about 3:30 a.m. God bless the donor family.”

The news comes on the heels of an update earlier Tuesday about Irwin being able to get up and walk at the hospital and having a meal of chicken gumbo before getting to hold her newborn son, Patrick, and spend time with her husband, John, for about an hour.

Her family has set up a You Caring page, at which people can donate to help with medical expenses and other costs. Donations also can be deposited in the Caitlin Johnson Irwin Medical account at Keesler Federal Credit Union.

Kate Magandy: 228-896-2344, @kmagandy

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