Burlington officer, firefighters help mom deliver baby in car

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ALAMANCE COUNTY, N.C. -- An Alamance County family says they are thankful a dramatic labor and delivery ended in all smiles.

Chelyse Wakins and Hue Anderson were expecting their baby Dec. 26, but little Kaelynn decided to come five days early.

A Burlington Police Officer and firefighters from a nearby fire station were all able to help out.

Watkins was having labor pains and went to a pre-scheduled doctor’s appointment. She wasn’t far enough along and was sent home. Within hours, she knew it was time.

Watkins explained, “On the way the hospital, I felt like I have to push, I have to push, I have to push. I told [Anderson] the baby was coming and by the time he looked back over there was a baby. In my lap.”

On top of it all, their car broke down on the way to the hospital right after Watkins delivered the baby.

They were only about a block from the police station and in the meantime, Burlington Police Officer Joshua Schultz had been dispatched to a report of a car speeding.

“Then they said they received a call about a possible childbirth in that area and that it was possibly related [to the speeding car report]. I was a block down the road and when I pulled up they were sitting in a driveway.”

The baby had already arrived, but Schultz said he was worried because she wasn’t crying much. “I looked at the dad and told him to get me a blanket or something and he took his sweatshirt off, wrapped the baby with a sweatshirt. I looked around for a string or something we could tie the cord off with. I asked the dad for his shoelace, and I think he had it out in about 0.2 seconds. I mean, it was the quickest I’ve ever seen anybody take a shoelace off!”

Schultz says within seconds, firefighters and paramedics arrived, too, and Firefighter Robert Riggan helped out with clamps and other equipment. “So he was able to use all the ‘real stuff’ to do instead of a shoelace and a sweatshirt,” Schultz laughed.

The whole situation was even more meaningful for Watkins, who lost a baby girl during delivery four years ago.

Kaelynn Keziah Anderson weighed 7 lbs. 1 oz. Two weeks later, mom and baby are both doing just fine.

“It was an experience like no other,” Watkins added. “Now that she’s here I haven’t gotten any sleep but it’s worth it. It’s so worth it! She’s just beautiful… I really want to thank everyone for the help and everything they were able to do for us.”