‘We’re having a road baby’: Tennessee woman gives birth on side of interstate

National News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Nashville couple was on the way to the hospital Wednesday when they had to make an emergency call to 911.

911: What’s the address of your emergency?
Ryan Thompson: Well, I’m actually not at an address. I’m on 440… My wife is having a baby.

Ryan’s pregnant wife Gayla was going into labor in the front seat.

“The contractions got so bad I got quiet,” said Gayla. “All of a sudden I couldn’t even scream, and I realized – crap – we’re having a road baby.”

She’d been having contractions the day before but thought they were Braxton Hicks, which are false labor pains. The couple took their 5-year-old to daycare in Mt. Juliet, before heading to Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

“She wanted me to speed with my hazards on – but I would rather get us there safely,” said Ryan. “And based on how quickly he came out, we weren’t going to make it regardless.”

“All of a sudden I couldn’t even scream, and I realized – crap – we’re having a road baby.”

Gayla Thompson

Ryan pulled over on I-440 near Nolensville Pike when he made the call to 911. “I see his head coming through right now,” Ryan told dispatchers.

During Gayla’s labor the couple noticed something was wrong.

Ryan: He’s not breathing and he’s not moving.
911: Okay is he changing color?
Ryan: His skin is real, real pale.

The couple realized the baby’s cord was wrapped around his neck.   

911: Try to slip the cord gently over the baby’s head using your fingers.
Ryan: There he is there he is! I got him I got him!
911: He’s completely out?
Ryan: Yeah, he’s out.

“You don’t even realize it’s happening,” recalled Ryan, “you let instincts take over and do what you gotta do.”

Baby Carson weighed in at seven pounds, three ounces. He is doing well after being taken to the hospital with his mom.

“They called us and said, hey we don’t see an address for his birth. His birth certificate will literally say I-440 by Nolensville Pike, which is like the coolest part of this story,” said Gayla.

A story the Nashville parents are grateful to say has a happy ending.

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