Elba first responders honored for safely delivering baby while on duty

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ELBA, Ala. (WTVY) - Coffee County first responders had a night they won't forget anytime soon a few weeks ago, and the city council honored them for it Monday afternoon.

The night of March 16th started like any other for the three dispatchers and two officers who were on duty at the Elba Police Department.

Then, a call came in that "delivered" quite a surprise.

"I fielded a 9-1-1 call with a panicked young lady on the phone, obviously, trying to deliver her baby, said Elba Police Department 9-1-1 Telecommunicator Jesse Jones.

The lady and her mother-in-law were hoping to track down an ambulance, but Jones had just dispatched one and the replacement was on its way back from opp.

He told them to come to the police station and they would wait with them till ambulance made it back.

"When they arrived, I went out, and it was an imminent birth,” said Jones. “She was actually crowning. We jumped in and did what we had to do."

Jones is trained and had helped deliver a few babies when working as an E.M.T., so he took charge of the situation.

He had plenty of help from his fellow dispatchers and officers working the shift with him.

"We were communicating with Haynes, back and forth, as for how the labor was going and the delivery was going,” said Telecommunicator Denise Boyd. “We just did whatever had to be done."

The baby came out with the umbilical cord around its neck, but an officer kept the mother calm and Jones managed to keep himself calm in the situation.

"The biggest thing is, you're trained for the worst, and pray for the best,” said Jones. “You're trained so that whenever situations do come about, you're ready."

The Elba City Council wanted to do something in honor of the dispatchers, not just for what they did that night, but for what they do, every day.

"Now forth, be it resolved that the City of Elba does hereby proclaim the week of April the 10th through the 20th, 2019 as National Telecommunications Week,” Elba Mayor Mickey Murdock announced during the meeting.

No one appreciates the talented staff more than Elba Police Chief Leslie Hussey.

"I feel like there was a reason the shift we had working that night was here, and that was the reason, so that we could have this baby,” said Hussey. “That was a bright spot in a usually gloomy job."

Hussey says both mom and baby are doing well.

Jones says he looks forward to telling his daughter this story one day, and hopes she follows in his footsteps as a public servant.

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