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Police help deliver baby on side of expressway

October 17, 2008

Pictured by Jay Janner
AMERICAN-STATESMAN

‘It was a crazy morning for us,’ Denise Egbert, who is hearing-impaired, said through an interpreter Thursday. ‘We really are appreciative that the police were around, right there, to help us.’ She and her husband, Clyde, haven’t picked a name for their daughter, but they say it won’t be MoPac.

Pictured by Rodolfo Gonzalez
AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Stephen Hines It ‘happened quickly.’

Pictured by Rodolfo Gonzalez
AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Deats Burbank It was ‘pretty intense.’

Pictured by Rodolfo Gonzalez
AMERICAN-STATESMAN

James Morgan

Police help deliver baby on side of expressway

The baby’s mother thought she could make it to the hospital, but her baby was born along the way.


AMERICAN-STATESMAN STAFF
Friday, October 17, 2008

Denise Egbert said she thought her contractions would last the 30-minute drive from her home in South Austin to the North Austin hospital where a midwife was to deliver her baby on Thursday.

Instead, Egbert’s third child came into this world in the front seat of her van, parked in the emergency lane along South MoPac Boulevard (Loop 1), with a stalled vehicle behind her and morning traffic zooming by. The closest thing she had to a midwife was her husband Clyde, 36, and three Austin police officers, who happened to already be on the side of the road.

“It was a crazy morning for us,” Denise, 34, who is hearing-impaired, said through an interpreter. “We really are appreciative that the police were around, right there, to help us.”

She said her original due date was Oct. 26, but she started feeling contractions a few minutes after she woke up Thursday.

After timing them and calling the hospital, Denise, Clyde and their two other children, Isadora, 5, and Xavier, 3, climbed into their van and started heading north from their home near Slaughter Lane.

But a few minutes into the ride, she realized that her baby wasn’t going to wait.

“I knew the baby was ready to come out right there,” Denise said. “I told my husband, ‘Pull over, pull over, any place, you’ve got to help me.”

“He saw the police off to the side of the road helping somebody else … so we pulled over in front of them.”

Officers Stephen Hines, Deats Burbank and James Morgan were 10 minutes into their shift, which began at 6 a.m., and assisting a stranded motorist on northbound MoPac between Loop 360 and Spyglass Drive when they saw Clyde, who is also hearing-impaired, frantically waving them over.

By that time, the baby had crowned, and she was born just as the officers got to the van.

It was still dark, and the event was illuminated by a dome light and a flashlight.

“Seeing the baby come out was pretty intense,” Burbank said.

The officer covered the mother and child with his jacket as an Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services crew arrived to take them to St. David’s North Austin Medical Center.

“It all happened very quickly,” Hines said. “The couple handled it pretty well. They were both really calm considering the situation.”

Denise stayed in the front seat, while her two other children were in the back.

“Dad grabbed a camera like a dad’s supposed to do,” Burbank said.

Hines and Burbank said Denise communicated with them by mouthing the words, “Is she OK?” when asking about her newborn.

In their hospital room, the Egberts smiled as they told their story, and Denise held her baby, who weighs 9 pounds 15 ounces. Denise was covered with an Austin Police Department blanket that her three police helpers gave her when they visited her at the hospital.

The newborn was unnamed as of Thursday, though the couple said they had gotten a few suggestions.

“A friend of mine said, ‘why don’t you name her Cara,’ ” Denise Egbert said. “Another friend said, ‘No, it should be Vana because it was in a van.’

“We haven’t decided on a first name. But we do have something in mind. It’s just not Vana. And it’s not Cara. And it’s not MoPac.”

mliscano@statesman.com; 445-3629

joshundasanders@statesman.com; 445-3630

From http://www.statesman.com/news/content/news/stories/local/10/17/1017mopacbaby.html

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Categories: Announcement
  1. Clyde
    October 17, 2008 at 8:03 pm

    its been decided Amelie

  2. October 19, 2008 at 1:52 pm

    Wow! Congrats to them, a father and mother!

  3. October 19, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    Clyde, Are you sure It already named Amelie.. it is unquie names! I know it’s kind of very hard to decide names .. Aimee or Amy is similiar to Amelie.. It is good names!

    “The parents of rush baby come out” – it is not seem right or funny sense of humor?

  4. Denise
    February 4, 2009 at 7:17 am

    Yep, Clyde and I are the parents from this article. Our daughter’s name is Amelie Esther Egbert.

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