Tami McKinney's first child three years ago was born relatively quickly. So quickly, in fact, that the Mount Airy family said McKinney's next child would be born on the side of the road.
They were just joking.
But Tami's second child not only was born within one hour of her going into labor, Case Harold McKinney was delivered in his father's 2006 Nissan Pathfinder on the side of Baltimore National Pike on the way to Frederick Memorial Hospital at 2:30 a.m. Wednesday.
"I thought that only happens on TV," father Kirk McKinney said. "I just had time to call 911. They tried to coach me on some things but between the yelling and commotion, it was difficult to follow anything."
By the time Kirk got around to Tami's side of the vehicle, little Case was already coming out, he said.
"I eased the seat back and got in the catching position," Kirk said. "She was screaming, and I was in shock."
Tami said Kirk's first comment to the 911 operator was, "My wife is in going into labor. That was wrong. His head was already out."
Even though first responders showed up within minutes, Case was already born when they arrived - all 6 pounds, 9 ounces and 19 inches of him.
"The umbilical cord was attached. They cut it, and I was just glad to get out of the way. I felt pretty helpless," Kirk said.
Tami said her first baby arrived quickly but not this quickly, and when her water broke it was probably a mistake telling her husband to take a shower before heading for the hospital.
On the way to the hospital, Kirk said he was thinking, "'Should I keep driving or pull over and wait for an ambulance?' Talk about distracted driving!"
Tami had planned to begin physician-assistant training in a month.
"If this had happened next year, I would have had some information to go on," she said. "There was a lot of screaming, but when he came out and began to cry, I felt better. We knew he was fine. We're thankful it went as easy as it did. Everyone's happy."
The McKinneys have already heard their share of jokes.
A nurse told them they would have to camp out in the parking lot next time, Tami said.
"Her mom said I was too cheap to do it in the hospital," Kirk said.
Kirk also wondered what the hospital charges would be since his son was born along the highway.
Cael, who is 3 years old, picked the name Lightning McQueen for his little brother, after the character in the movie "Cars."
"But we have to break the news to him that's not his name," Tami said.
A third child may not be in the stars for the McKinneys. "After you do it this way, that seals it for us," Kirk said.
Watch a video of the couple talking about their experience here.
Copyright 2011 The Frederick News-Post. All rights reserved.
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