'I just had a single bar left on the battery' - Dad's panic as he delivers baby on roadside with medic on phone
A young Kerry father successfully helped his partner deliver their infant son by the roadside thanks to careful instructions over the phone from paramedics.
Owen Reen (20) said that both his partner Rebecca Cremin (23) and himself were totally relieved baby Jayden was born without complications after the couple were shocked to realise they wouldn't make it to Kerry University Hospital (KUH) in Tralee in time for the delivery.
The baby was safely delivered by the time paramedics reached the couple's car.
Baby Jayden wasn't due for five weeks - and Owen was stunned when Rebecca first told him at their Rathmore home at 7pm last Friday that she urgently needed to get to KUH.
He immediately drove his partner towards Tralee but her waters broke on the outskirts of Killarney.
Owen was then horrified to realise that the battery on his mobile phone was virtually exhausted.
"Jayden was not due for another five weeks when Rebecca realised that we needed to get to the hospital quickly," Owen said.
"It was a bit of a frightening experience alright. What made it terrifying was that my phone had not been charged overnight. I just had a single bar left on the battery."
Owen rang his sister Edel for advice as she had given birth just last year. She rang Kerry paramedics who then called Owen.
"When they contacted me, they advised me that I would not make it to KUH and it was better to stop and deliver the baby myself," he explained.
"The paramedic on the phone was fantastic and helped me to remain calm throughout. We are really so grateful for all their help.
"It all happened so fast I really did not have time to panic."
Owen described the delivery - in which he even managed to tie baby Jayden's umbilical cord - as "the toughest thing I have ever had to do".
"But I also want to say that it was the greatest experience of my life. I'm just so thrilled that everything turned out so well."
Because he was born premature, Jayden is not expected home for several days.
"Jayden is getting fantastic care. We really want to thank everyone at KUH and all the paramedics for their help," Owen said.