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Medic reunited with boy she delivered in ambulance

“As medics, a lot of the time our 15 minutes with them in the ambulance," she said, "that’s the last we hear"

By Kera Wanielista
Skagit Valley Herald

BURLINGTON, Wash. — Most paramedics go an entire career without delivering a baby in the back of an ambulance. But in just her first three years as a paramedic with Central Skagit Medic One, Alexa Bowen has already passed that milestone.

Seventeen months ago, Bowen was covering for a colleague when they got the call that a mother was in labor at the nearby birth center.The baby, six weeks early, was on its way, and his heart rate was dropping. With the uncertainty of his condition at that point, the medics were called to take mother and baby to the hospital.

But they didn’t quite get there fast enough.

Little Kellan Meadows was born in the back of the ambulance.

“That five seconds felt like eternity,” Bowen said of the time spent waiting for Kellan to scream his first scream.

On Monday morning, Bowen and Kellan were reunited, the first time she had seen him since that August day.

“As medics, a lot of the time our 15 minutes with them in the ambulance, a lot of the times, that’s the last we hear,” Bowen said.

Now walking, Bowen said it was rewarding to get to see him again, and in such good health after his initial health scare.

“He is happy and healthy and growing like a weed,” she said.

Shortly after his birth, Kellan was adopted into the Meadows family where he now has two older sisters and a 7-month-old younger brother. For adoptive mom Shannon Meadows, who requested the surprise meeting with Bowen, hearing Kellan’s story from the woman who was there made all the difference.

“I already know my kids’ story and how they came in, and to not have that with him …,” she said.

For the second time in his short life, Kellan got to spend time in an ambulance, as Bowen demonstrated for the family some of the details of his birth.

“There were some really funny moments,” Bowen said.

At the time, delivering Kellan was just something that happened, she said. In retrospect, it seems a little scarier. She had delivered babies before in paramedic school, but never in a moving ambulance.

“All of a sudden, he was here and he was happy,” she said.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service
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