Dad delivers baby on side of highway in Ann Arbor

Published On: Jun 27 2013 10:46:20 PM EDT
Updated On: Jun 27 2013 11:25:33 PM EDT

The mother didn't expect to be going into labor so soon, and it was too late: they were having the baby on US 23.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -

Nicole and Matthew Culwell's baby girl Susanna wasn't expected until mid-July.

So, when Nicole started experiencing contractions Monday morning she didn't expect it was labor.

"I wasn't thinking, 'This is labor,' I really wasn't," she said.

Still, as a precaution the couple headed for the hospital. It was on US-23 in Ann Arbor where their journey to parenthood picked up speed.

"As soon as we got onto the 23 highway, that's when I was thinking like ... I don't know what this is ... 'I think I'm going to have this baby right now,'" said Nicole.

They were less than 7 miles from St. Joseph Mercy Hospital and time was running out.

"And then I just felt her crowning and I was like, 'I don't think I can do this, you need to pull over right now,'" she said.

Her husband stopped at mile marker 42 and called 911.

911: Are you pulled over?

Matthew: Yeah we're pulled over. You can see the baby coming out.

Less than 5 minutes later, the father delivered his baby girl.

Matthew: Oh, her head is out. Her head is out. Alright, oh my God. The baby's out. The baby's out. Hold her, Nicole. What do I do? She's breathing.

The 911 dispatch was a big help, he said.

"If she wasn't on that phone I think it could have been a little more hectic than it was. But I think having somebody there to kind of coach you through it and somebody who has been through it, it's definitely a good thing," he said.

After paramedics arrived, Nicole finally made it to the hospital, with an unexpected delivery.

"As soon as she entered, we've been in love ever since," the mother said.

Dad says it's a story some people might not believe.

"I have to try and make people believe this story, so it's a pretty awesome feeling," he said.

Local 4 spoke with the 911 dispatcher, Carol Leellis. She said when she heard the baby cry it was a big relief because she knew everything was OK. She said she was honored to be part of that special delivery. She wishes the new parents the best of luck.


-- Baby Susanna

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