Prince's Ex Recalls His 'Terror' at Terminally Ill Son's Birth
Amiir was born with rare genetic condition, lived just 6 days
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 15, 2017 10:55 AM CDT
Mayte Garcia arrives at the ALMA Awards on Sunday, Sept. 16, 2012, in Pasadena, Calif.   (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

(Newser) – In a new memoir, Prince's ex-wife Mayte Garcia tells the heartbreaking story of giving birth to her son with the musician, Amiir, who lived just six days. "I don’t think [Prince] ever got over it," says Garcia to People, which has an exclusive excerpt from the memoir. Garcia was 22 when she started bleeding one day during her pregnancy; a doctor recommended amniocentesis to check for genetic abnormalities, but that has a risk of miscarriage associated. "My husband said, 'No, we’re not doing that,'" Garcia writes in her memoir. During subsequent exams, it continued to look as if the baby had some sort of complication. At one point, a doctor told them it might be a form of dwarfism, which was the first possibility they heard that didn't "terrify" them, Garcia writes. Prince refused a second amnio when it was again suggested.

Garcia gave birth on Oct. 16, 1996. Prince's face showed "pure joy," she writes. "And then they held the baby up to those harsh lights. The elation on my husband’s face turned to pure terror." Amiir had Pfeiffer syndrome type 2, a rare genetic disorder that causes premature fusing of skull bones, eyes outside the sockets, and fused hand and foot bones. Amiir was also struggling to breathe, leading Prince to frantically question why he wasn't crying when he was born. "He was curled on his side, gasping shallow little gulps of air," Garcia writes of their son. "Because there were no lids to blink, his eyes looked startled and dry." They comforted him, and over the next few days he underwent several procedures but was still struggling to breathe. He died six days after his birth. The Most Beautiful: My Life With Prince comes out April 4.

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