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Pennsylvania Couple Vows Not to Separate Their Conjoined Twins

Pennsylvania Couple Vows Not to Separate Their Conjoined Twins
Andrew Donovan Lee and Garrett Lee Donovan Stancombe
CNN

04/27/2014 01:25PM

Conjoined twins Andrew Donovan Lee and Garrett Lee Donovan Stancombe share both a liver and a heart – and their parents say it's going to stay that way.

"We've discussed it and we see the best is to keep them together," their mother, Michelle Van Horne, told Pittsburgh's WTAE-TV.

"They were born together, they can stay together," says Van Horne, 25, of Indiana, Pa. "I think it would hurt us to lose one and have the other."

The boys were born on April 10 at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center in Johnstown, Pa.



The overall survival rate of conjoined twins is between two and 25 percent. No separation surgery has been successfully performed on twins sharing a heart, according to CNN.

"I'm thankful they were able to survive this long, and they're still going strong," their 25-year-old father, Kody Stancombe, told WTAE.

Pennsylvania Couple Vows Not to Separate Their Conjoined Twins| Twins, Real People Stories

Michelle Van Horne and Kody Stancombe

CNN

Van Horne has taken a leave from her job at a local personal care home, so her sister set up a fundraising site to help pay for food and clothing for the twins.

Van Horne and Stancombe appreciate the effort, but say it's not something they're comfortable with. "I don't know … I'm not too keen on asking for something," Stancombe told The Indiana Gazette. "It's too weird for me."

The boys are doing just fine now – though they are on different sleeping schedules, the couple told The Indiana Gazette.

"For me, [the best part is] being able to hold them and hear them cry and know they're here with me," Van Horne told WTAE-TV. "Just seeing their eyes open and listening to them is just amazing to me."

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