- Associated Press - Saturday, February 25, 2017

NORTON, W.Va. (AP) - A local grandmother who helped deliver her 14th grandchild in a surprise home birth calls the experience a blessing.

Newborn Rylee Annalice Cooper made her grand entrance so quickly that her mother, Trasonda “Toodles” Noel, wasn’t able to make it to the hospital in time. The baby was due around Feb. 13, but she arrived at 7:25 a.m. Feb. 1, weighing 6 pounds, 3 ounces.

Maternal grandmother Suzanne Noel said she received a call from her daughter’s boyfriend, Jeff Cooper, at about 6:45 a.m., letting her know that her daughter was having contractions. Suzanne Noel said her daughter lives nearby, so she quickly got dressed and drove over, intending to babysit her other grandchildren while her daughter and Cooper went to the hospital.

Cooper also called 911, and he was on the phone with emergency dispatchers when the grandmother arrived.

“It progressed really fast,” Suzanne Noel said, explaining that she went in to check on her daughter, and in just a few minutes, she suddenly saw the baby’s head. “It was just natural, and (the baby) came so fast. I really didn’t have to do anything.”

She added she was worried that the umbilical cord might be wrapped around the baby’s head or that there could be other complications, but everything was fine.

This is Toodles Noel’s fourth child, and her oldest daughter, 11-year-old Maddie, took care of 5-year-old Lyllie and 4-year-old Jaxson in another room.

Toodles Noel said she almost didn’t make it to the hospital in time with her third child, but she still was surprised how quickly her labor progressed this time.

Less than 5 minutes after the baby was born, Chris Wilson arrived, along with Mike Mayo and other emergency personnel from Randolph County Emergency Medical Services.

Wilson is an emergency medical technician lieutenant who has more than 22 years of experience, and he said this was his first home birth.

“It’s kind of nice seeing someone coming into the world instead of going out,” Wilson said.

He said he checked the baby and mother, cut the cord and then transported them to Davis Medical Center in Elkins.

“Grandma had done a fine job,” he said.

Suzanne Noel added, “It was a team effort.”

Suzanne Noel said she has 14 grandchildren, four stepgrandchildren and one great grandchild, but this was a unique experience.

“It was such a blessing to be able to bring your grandchild into the world and into our lives,” she said. “So much could have gone wrong, but with the grace of God, He saw us through it all.”


Information from: The Inter-Mountain, https://www.theintermountain.com

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