Sunday 16 June 2019

Young father (20) helps partner deliver their infant son five weeks early by roadside

The baby boy, who was born five weeks prematurely, was delivered with the guidance of ambulance personnel over the phone. Credit: Domnick Walsh
The baby boy, who was born five weeks prematurely, was delivered with the guidance of ambulance personnel over the phone. Credit: Domnick Walsh

Ralph Riegel

A young father successfully helped his partner deliver their infant son by the roadside thanks to careful instructions over the mobile phone from paramedics.

Owen Reen (20) admitted that both his partner, Rebecca (23), and himself were totally relieved baby Jayden was born without complications after the couple were shocked to realise they wouldn’t make 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 she needed to get to KUH urgently.

He immediately drove his partner towards Tralee but her waters broke on the outskirts of Killarney.

Both Rebecca and Owen immediately realised they wouldn’t make KUH in time.

To make matters worse, Owen was 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. She was getting severe labour pains,” 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 and they immediately rang Owen back on his mobile phone.

“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 his help during the delivery.”

“It all happened so fast I really did not have time to panic. We left the house in Rathmore at 7 p.m. and Jayden arrived just 40 minutes later.”

A relieved Owen described the delivery – in which he even managed to tie-off baby Jayden’s umbilical cord – “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.”

Baby Jayden is now doing well in the Emily Ward of KUH.

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.

Rebecca has already been discharged from KUH and is now counting down the days to when her baby is allowed back home to Rathmore.

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