'Stork' award: Public safety recognized for help in baby's surprise home delivery in Farmington
Baby Noah Marthey squealed with delight while being held by his mother inside Farmington City Hall chambers.
Maybe it was his way of thanking 10 Farmington public safety fire and police who were present during his grand entrance into the world at his Farmington home on July 23.
Noah is the son of Jenae and Josh Marthey of Farmington and the new sibling to big brother, Landon, who was home to welcome his new baby brother into the family during the surprise home birth.
Jenae's water broke at 2 a.m. at home and she immediately awoke her husband, who began packing to head to the hospital.
"We thought we had several hours of laboring before we went to the hospital so I got in the shower," Jenae Marthey said.
When the couple timed her labor contractions, they were only a minute and a half apart. "We knew that meant the baby was coming," Josh said.
Within 45 minutes, she was ready to push. Apparently, Noah had a desire to enter the world on his own time schedule.
"We called the hospital to let them know we were coming," Jenae said. Then Josh woke his son Landon so he could be taken to stay with grandparents.
But when Jenae stepped out of the shower, she could not move because she was in serious pain. Josh immediately called 911.
Farmington Fire Chief Jim Larsen responded to the call of a woman in labor as the duty chief. Farmington police officer Dane Tukua was on patrol only four blocks away and responded swiftly.
When he arrived, Josh was comforting Jenae as she was lying on her back on the bed in labor.
Alone for five minutes with the family, Tukua assisted Josh with the baby's delivery.
"I got there and the little guy was not waiting any longer," Tukua said.
Within 30 seconds, the baby's head was crowning. Josh recalled saying "Oh, my God" as Jenae only needed four pushes for the home delivery.
Larsen arrived on scene before the delivery. Shortly afterward two EMTs showed up to help.
As a joyful and relieved father, Josh was able to cut the umbilical cord.
Larsen recalled wide smiles by all of the local rescuers on scene.
"It was my first delivery and it is something that we train for but most officers won't experience it," Tukua said.
Each of the 10 local public safety were presented with special stork delivery certificates and pins from Allina Health Medical.
"We like to recognize police and fire and paramedics so all know the great things going on in the community, and it is so phenomenal because they were so willing to share their story," said Patti McCauley, education specialist and paramedic with Allina Health EMS.
Those included Larsen, firefighters Steven Endres, Benny Van Cleve and Dan Strumberger, and police officers Chris Lutz and Tukua. The two paramedics, Shane Kinney and Andrew Rinerson, were honored but were not present at the Sept. 18 meeting.
"We see so many things that don't turn out good, and so the miracle of birth and to be able to be part of that is an exceptional experience, and you can see that all of us were just smiling from ear to ear," Larsen said.