August 15, 2012
Mom delivers own baby in store parking lot
By Jennifer Hamilton-McCharles, QMI Agency
NORTH BAY, ONT. - Billie Jean Allaire knew she wasn't going to make it to the hospital to have her baby. But she never imagined she would have to deliver her son herself inside a truck in the parking lot of a convenience store.
Allaire recalled Saturday's experience Wednesday while cradling her newborn son.
She woke up at her townhouse Saturday morning sore. But having given birth to two other children, she knew labour could take awhile.
“I had a bath and tried to relax, but the pain just kept coming back. By 8 a.m., I knew I had to go to the hospital,” she said. “The contractions were getting quicker and, at times, I felt like I was going to lose my legs.”
Allaire and her boyfriend, Rob Gilson, borrowed a vehicle and headed toward the North Bay Regional Health Centre. But it became clear to Allaire that the baby wasn't going to wait.
“We were driving over the Lakeshore overpass and the baby's head was coming out,” she said. “I yelled at Rob to pull over and stop.”
They drove into the parking lot at Mac's Convenience Store. Within minutes, Allaire delivered her third child. Joshua Arthur Gilson weighed in at seven pounds, 14 ounces.
“I was shocked. This was something I had never expected,” Allaire says.
Mihir Tank, owner of the convenience store, said he's never experienced anything like it.
“The father came running into the store and asked for a towel. I didn't know what was going on. We didn't have any towels, so I offered him some napkins,” Tank said.
He said a customer handed the frantic father a clean sweatshirt.
“Then ambulance and police arrived and we were told a woman had delivered a baby in the parking lot.”
Although Gilson and Allaire are getting to know their new baby boy, it wasn't all good news.
The couple will be spending the next few months travelling to the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Ottawa to correct Joshua's club feet.
The couple receives Ontario Works benefits and admit they are concerned about the travel expenses on an already tight budget.