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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

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1/9/2014 2:08:00 PM
Grandma becomes backseat birther in driveway of Cottonwood hospital
It was a shaky start for Karson Ray Ashley as the infant was born feet first in the backseat of his grandma’s car Wednesday in the parking lot of Verde Valley Medical Center. Courtesy photo
It was a shaky start for Karson Ray Ashley as the infant was born feet first in the backseat of his grandma’s car Wednesday in the parking lot of Verde Valley Medical Center. Courtesy photo

Yvonne Gonzalez
Staff Reporter


Karson Ray Ashley was born feet first in the backseat of his grandma's car Wednesday, a speedy conclusion to a commute from Camp Verde to Verde Valley Medical Center.

Tammy Oothoudt said daughter Krista Ashley started having timeable contractions around 8 a.m.

"We decided it was time that we started to get ready to come into the hospital," Oothoudt said. "She's not due until Feb. 4. They'd sent her home once before, so we weren't in a great rush."

The family sped things up a bit when Ashley's water broke while she was in the shower. They pulled up to VVMC and Oothoudt ran to get a wheelchair.

"By the time I got to the back of the car, the baby was coming out," she said. "I ran in and asked for help, then I stayed with her. Everything was delivered except the head by the time they got there. It was just, all right, this is happening, and we just did it. My daughter is awesome."

Not only was Karson breech, but his umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck several times as well.

"Once it all happened and I could breathe, I just started bawling," Oothoudt said. "I'm thankful that everything's OK, because aside from the fact that he was born in the car, he was breech and the cord was wrapped around his neck."

Karson is Krista's first child. The 5-pound, 3-ounce, 19-inch baby boy's birth certificate will list "vehicle in the hospital parking lot" as the place he was born. Karson joins cousins Bentley, a 2-year-old girl; and 1-year-old Kayden, who he shares a birthday with.

"I would have thought that she would've really freaked out, but she didn't," Oothoudt said of her daughter. "We just did what we had to do. Krista's the real hero!"

This 2014 birth is not the typical baby story at VVMC, which saw 567 births in 2013. This is up from 508 births in 2010, the lowest count in four years.

The Verde Valley typically has more girls than boys, though they did not make up the majority of births last year. There were 291 boys born in 2013, 25 more than girls.

The peak month for deliveries was June with 58 births.

The lowest month for deliveries was April with 37 births.



Follow the reporter on Twitter @ymgonzal and Instagram @Verde_News

Taylor Waste

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Reader Comments

Posted: Friday, January 10, 2014
Article comment by: Debbie Moore

Way to go Tammy and Krista! Congratulation!



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