A Plymouth couple’s newborn couldn’t wait for her parents to get to the hospital, entering the world instead in a minivan parked on the side of a road.
Lillian Louise was born early Friday morning to Jill and Chris Heath, who had hoped to make the 20-minute drive to Fairview Southdale Hospital until the baby’s head began to emerge.
Chris pulled onto a Highway 100 exit ramp and frantically dialed 911 _ but he ended up delivering his daughter himself. "It’d be interesting to hear those tapes," he said Saturday.
The couple’s trek began about 1 a.m. Friday, six days before Jill’s due date, when she felt two contractions and knew it was time to go.
With Jill in bare feet and wearing only a jacket and pink sweat pants, the couple took off in the minivan, which Chris drives for his sales job at Eden Prairie’s Packaging Incorporated.
By the time they hit Interstate 394, they were calling the hospital to say, "This baby is coming."
Once on Highway 100, Jill could no longer stay seated as the baby’s head began to push against her pants. Despite her husband’s imploring, "Just hold it. We’ll be there in five minutes," Jill finally told him to pull over at West 50th Street and Vernon Avenue.
In just seconds, Lillian was in Chris’s hands and placed gently on Jill’s stomach, wrapped in the pink pants. A minute or two later, police officers arrived at the van, its windows shrouded in steam.
Lillian, who has cried little and been peaceful since her unusual arrival, is the couple’s fourth child _ and perhaps the last. "This just reconfirms there is no more," Jill said as she held her daughter at the hospital.
Information from: Star Tribune, http://www.startribune.com