Breann Stanzell woke up on May 14th with plans to spend Mother’s Day with her husband, Dan, and three children – ages 5, 3, and 2. She was also pregnant with her 4th child, a baby girl due on May 26th. She had been having some preterm contractions off and on for a couple of weeks and was scheduled to be induced on May 19th, but on Mother’s Day morning she knew it was time. Knowing her previous deliveries had gone fairly quickly, they called the children’s grandma right away to come to their house in Mt. Iron and watch them while Breann and Dan headed for the hospital in Hibbing at about 9:30 a.m.
On the drive to the hospital, Breann was having contractions but was able to speak calmly still, so she was thinking they had plenty of time. As soon as they parked at the hospital though, her water broke and Breann told her husband to go inside and get help because she knew the baby was coming.
Fairview Range Security Officer Chris Voigt was standing near the Emergency entrance preparing to do his rounds, when he saw a man running towards the door – it was Dan. He told Chris his wife’s water had broken and she needed help right away. Chris called for help while he and Dan hurried back to the vehicle where they saw Breann sitting on the ground. She said the baby was coming and within seconds, before Chris could even kneel down to help, the baby was born.
Chris put on gloves and his brain quickly remembered how to handle a newborn by thinking back to when his daughter was born 15 years ago. He gently lifted the baby putting one hand on her back and the other under her head, cleaned around her mouth and face and handed her to Breann. The baby was crying and moving – all good signs. The response team arrived swiftly and lifted Breann and baby onto a bed to bring them into the Emergency Department for further evaluation. The baby’s Apgar test (a quick test performed at 1 and 5 minutes after birth to determine how well the baby tolerated the birthing process and how the baby is doing outside the mother’s womb) was a score of 1, essentially meaning there were some initial concerns about the baby’s health. Thankfully, both mom and baby ended up doing great!
Anna Louise was born on May 14th at 9:54 a.m. (only about 25 minutes after leaving their home in Mt. Iron) weighing 7 lbs 1.4 oz and 20 inches long.
Chris went up to the Women’s Health & Birth Center about an hour later to check in on the family and was so happy to see everyone was doing well.
“You hear the stories, but you never think it’s going to be you,” says Breann. “I just went into survival mode. I still can’t believe that actually happened!”
Chris has worked as a Security Officer at Fairview Range for the last one and half years. Before that, he worked in another security role for seven years, plus has seven years of experience on a volunteer fire department. “I’ve experienced a lot of things, but none as cool as this,” says Chris. “This is definitely a highlight of my career.”
Baby Anna definitely has quite the birth story and has created a Mother’s Day memory that the Stanzell’s – and Fairview Range staff like Chris – will never forget!