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Sister Serves as Surrogate for Brother's Baby

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A Washington state family is joining the ranks of those who are having children through a gestational surrogate--a woman who carries and delivers a baby for a couple that can create a healthy embryo but cannot sustain a healthy pregnancy.

Tiffany Burke, a mother of 2, is carrying a baby for her brother and his wife, James and Natalie Lucich. The couple has a son, but Lucich required postpartum surgery in which her uterus had to be removed.  CNN has more:

It took a week for the news to set in. Lucich could have no more children naturally. Her dream had always been to have three. She was crushed.

A few days later, Burke headed over to the Luciches' house to take pictures of the new family. Lucich confided how conflicted she felt: She was grateful for Hunter but also mourning the loss of the children she would never have.

Lucich mentioned to Burke that she still had her eggs. She and James were considering using a gestational surrogate. An embryo, created in a Petri dish from Natalie's egg and James' sperm, would be implanted in the surrogate mother. None of the surrogate's DNA is involved.

"I was pissed!" Burke recalled. She was worried: What if the surrogate drank or smoked or did something to harm herself? She didn't want the Luciches to take that chance.

Suddenly, Burke blurted out, "I'll do it!" Embarrassed, she immediately covered her mouth and apologized.

Lucich looked at her. "I thought you didn't want any more children, you were done being pregnant."

"Yes," Burke responded, "we don't want any more natural children of our own ... but I have this perfectly good uterus!"

Earlier this month, a 49-year-old Maine grandmother served as the surrogate for her own grandson, and reality TV stars Giuliana and Bill Rancic welcomed a baby boy born via a surrogate who was not a family member.

Image: Hand touching pregnant belly, via Shutterstock

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