Childless Long Island couple gets ultimate surprise from friends' selfless act

Kristin Thorne Image
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Childless Long Island couple gets ultimate surprise from friends' selfless act
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Kristin Thorne has the story

ST. JAMES, Long Island (WABC) -- One Long Island couple proved that a selfless act can change the lives of others forever.

Kevin Barattini and his wife Nicole, of St. James, received the surprise of a lifetime after they thought they would never have kids of their own.

Right before they were about to get married, the couple received the horrible news that Nicole has a rare autoimmune disease.

"I was able to conceive," Nicole said. "But I wouldn't be able to have a healthy pregnancy, and it would result in death of myself or the baby."

Kevin's long time friend Shawn Fives and his wife Lianna knew about their struggle, though the East Moriches couple has five kids of their own ranging in age from 1 to 13.

Then, in 2015, Lianna gave Kevin and Nicole a surprise while they were out to dinner one night.

"Lianna goes, 'Well I have five. I'm looking to have one or two more," Kevin said. "We looked at her, 'What are you crazy?' She goes, 'Not for me.' That's when they offered to carry a baby for us."

And so Lianna acted as a gestational surrogate for the Barattinis, carrying Nicole's egg fertilized with Kevin's sperm.

"I love my kids," Lianna said. "To see people who should have kids and couldn't upsets me."

From the joint pregnancy announcement to joint pregnancy photo shoots and baby showers, it became a team effort.

"All four of us, I think we made 95 percent of the doctors' appointments," Shawn said. "Everything we did, it was all as a group."

Dominic and Luciana, twins, were born February 10 at Good Samaritan Hospital in West Islip, and both couples were present in the delivery room.

"Nobody ever questioned why we were there or why there were four people," Nicole said. "It couldn't have gone any better."

The Barattinis even made Shawn and Lianna the Godparents.

Dominic and Luciana are not even two months old, and already, they have an incredible story to tell. It is one that these couples hope others will share.

"After hearing our story, I hope that there are people out there that will help other couples because they gave us life," Nicole said. "They changed our lives forever."