Baby delivered inside L'Enfant Plaza Metro station
WASHINGTON (WJLA) -- 23-year-old Shavonnte Taylor was riding Metro's Green line to a prenatal appointment Thursday morning when the baby she was carrying decided he didn't want to wait any longer to come.
Luckily, an off-duty EMT and several bystanders were at the ready to help when Taylor gave birth to 8 pound, 5 ounce Amir Mason on the platform at the L'Enfant Plaza station.
"It was kind of shocking, kind of scary, because I didn't want to have my baby at a train station," says Taylor. "I had two contractions that were very close together and very strong, and by the time I had the third one, it took me to my knees and my water broke. Three contractions later, I had the baby."
With no time to get to a hospital, good Samaritans jumped into action. The off-duty EMT started delivering the baby while a man on the platform literally offered the shirt off his back to lend assistance.
“It just happened to be the best of luck that there was an emergency medical technician off-duty on board that train who was able to give assistance,” says WMATA's Caroline Lukas.
Metro station manager Saa Alpha was one of the helpers. He says it was incredible to see a bunch of strangers come together to help. Among those was an off-duty EMT who took charge.
"I'm grateful there was a bunch of people around that were willing to help me and my baby," Taylor says.
The EMT who jumped in to help was Montclair resident Autumn Manka. She heard Shavonte's screams when she got off her train.
"I said, "Does anyone have any medical training, is anyone a nurse or EMT?" and everyone said no," she said.
A few moments later, a bouncing baby boy came into the world, right next to an escalator where a crowd had gathered, their hushed silence erupting into cheers of relief and lots of handshakes.
"I would just want to tell the young lady who helped me deliver the baby, thank you," says Taylor. "And thank you to everyone who was around that helped us."
Medics arrived to rush the new mom and baby to George Washington University hospital, leaving little evidence of what happened at the metro station – just stories that circulated from rider to rider.
A baby was just delivered ON THE PLATFORM at L'Enfant Plaza. MTPD on scene. Additional details will follow. #WMATA— Metro Transit Police (@MetroTransitPD) August 1, 2013
D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray was quick to congratulate mother and baby, who Transit Police say appear to both be doing well.
.@metrotransitpd Wow! Prayers that mother & child are doing well.— Vincent C. Gray (@mayorvincegray) August 1, 2013
Metro General Manager Richard Sarles also got in on the congratulations, writing a letter to Taylor and giving her a $100 SmarTrip card.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.