Before I show you their beautiful lifestyle newborn photos, I really wanted to do their story justice and share it with you as best I can.

Three weeks ago, the Tate family was driving home from a family outing from Indianapolis. Do you remember that week when it was incredibly icy and scary out? Well it was that week when they were driving. When they were approaching Lafayette, their car hit black ice and spun out – getting pinned by a cement railing.

The family was all transported to the hospital in Lafayette. Lauren was released that evening with some bruising. Dylan fractured his hip and has a concussion. Ethan fractured his skull and had a bad concussion.

And the scary part about this accident was that Melissa was 36 weeks pregnant and the time. Due to the trauma of everything, baby boy Tate was delivered by emergency c-section on Saturday night.

The doctors told Melissa that if she delivered 5 minutes later, beautiful Liam most likely would not have survived.

The amazing doctors took great care of him, but he spent a few days in the NICU. They had to give him a blood transfusion, as he lost some blood during the accident. Melissa suffered bruising, whiplash, and a small fracture in her skull.

Ricky took the brunt of the accident and broke his pelvis bone in 4 places. He was sent to Indianapolis for surgery right after the accident. Surgery went well, but he will have a long rode to recovery. He also broke a few ribs and some vertebrae are misplaced. He will be at St. Vincent for the rest of the week and then hopefully transferred to St. Elizabeth East for rehab (probably 6 weeks).

This accident is even more of a burden as Ricky is in-between jobs and his insurance will soon lapse. They are living in faith that Heavenly Father will help them through this time. A family member of theirs started a GoFundMe to help them during this time: https://www.gofundme.com/TateSupport


My heart broke when I heard this story. I can’t even begin to imagine the emotions that they felt during this time. But despite everything, everyone survived and is healing. The kids, when I came over, were so happy and full of love. They hovered over their baby brother like he was their favorite person in the world. Just wait till you see these photos…

And what struck me the most was the strength and faith that Melissa has. With Ricky in the hospital, she is raising a newborn and her three other children on her own. And she is still in pain from the accident, making it difficult to do everything she needs to do. I am so amazed by her – but she is doing it and I know that Heavenly Father is helping her, along with His angels.

Once Ricky is home, I am planning on heading back to their home for some more photos of the entire family. But for now, we wanted to capture Liam in his newborn phase, which was so important to Melissa and almost didn’t happen with all the craziness.

And again if you feel prompted to help this family, please do. Every little bit helps!

Help the Tate Family

Vanessa Isenbarger, with Pearl Photo & Design, specializes in capturing lifestyle & studio newborn photos, family, maternity, milestone, and senior portraits. Let me know if you are interested in a session!