MARSHALL COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) — The call came in at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, from a family in a rural area of the county.
The grandmother reported that the mother-to-be was suddenly in labor and things were escalating quickly.
While an e-squad was dispatched to the home, the 911 dispatcher talked the grandmother through the process of delivering her own grandchild.
“I had her gather towels to get ready,” said Alyssa McClelland, Marshall County 911 dispatcher. “When the baby’s head approached, I made sure the cord wasn’t wrapped around the baby’s neck. And then when the baby was delivered, I had her do suctioning. Honestly, they deserve all the credit. They both did really, really, really well. It was awesome!”
“So when we arrived, the mom had baby in hand, baby was crying, you know, doing baby things,” said William DeLong, paramedic crew chief with Marshall County EMS. “So we were able to cut the cord, provide care to both the baby and the mother, and get them transported to the hospital.”
“The outcome of this story was great because the grandma did call back, thanked everybody for their participation, their kindness and their expertise in delivering the grandchild,” said Betsy Frohnapfel, county administrator. “And that’s great, because a lot of times our EMS employees and our 911 dispatchers, they don’t know the end result. And when it’s good, that makes it even better.”
The dispatcher and the paramedics earned their “stork wings,” a lapel pin featuring a stork and a baby.
They say the mother and the baby are back home and doing well.
Due to privacy laws, they can’t release their names, hometown or even if the baby was a boy or a girl.
(Hint: the stork wings are pink.)
But they say this was a chapter in their careers that had a joyful ending.