MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa -- Having a baby is stressful under the best of circumstances, but what about approaching your due date while living in a Red Cross emergency shelter?
That was the reality for one Marshalltown couple after they were forced out of their home following the tornado which went through town a little over two weeks ago.
“Those Army cots aren’t very comfortable especially if you’re nine months pregnant” said Samantha Keffer.
Keffer and her fiancé Jason Tuttle were left without power, water, or gas at their home in Marshalltown and decided to stay at the emergency shelter at the local YMCA.
“It was very uncomfortable most of the time, I felt very blessed, actually, because they were very nice and pleasant to us there” said Keffer.
Keffer was approaching her due date, July 25th, and the couple wasn't sure if the hospital would be open in time for her to deliver there, if they would have to go to a different hospital, or if they would even be delivering at the shelter.
“Red Cross helped out a lot, made sure somebody was on staff if we delivered at that point. It was a little nerve-racking, but what was nice was somebody was there who was qualified to do it” said Tuttle.
Keffer's due date came and went, but still no baby.
“Honestly I just wanted it to happen. I was getting very tired at that point” she said.
The hospital would re-open, doctors decided to induce labor, and Joseph Doyle Ringo Lynn Tuttle was born on Wednesday; a healthy eight pounds and 20 and a half inches. His parents say they've now got a crazy story to tell him when he's old enough to understand.
“You were in a tornado once! and you made mommy very uncomfortable through it! But no, I think this is mostly a blessing out of all the destruction that happened” said Keffer.
“This town is going to have a permanent scar on it, and we’ll be able to show him the pictures of what he went through. I think once he gets older and understands, hey I was a good thing that came out of this” said Tuttle.
The couple can now return home and they say they're happy to be sleeping in their own bed.