Manchester constables deliver bouncing baby boy

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Manchester constables deliver bouncing baby boy

Grateful parents praise committed law enforcers

BY KASEY WILLIAMS
Staff reporter
kaseyw@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, January 24, 2021

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MANDEVILLE, Manchester — Tasheca Graham is forever grateful for the swift response of two police constables who came to her rescue on the night of January 9, as she was on the brink of delivering her son while stranded in a broken-down car.

Graham, her spouse and two relatives were on their way to Mandeville Regional Hospital when the unthinkable happened. Their car broke down at Hatfield, about five kilometres away from the institution.

Constables Nickroy Neish and Rolando Clarke, who were on highway patrol, responded to Graham's distress and she delivered her son, Andrew Jessie Powell Jr, in a police unit about 10:00 pm.

“I remember everything, from leaving home, to my son-in-law's car breaking down on the road, to my daughter calling the police — and they never took five minutes to come. They took me to the hospital but the baby couldn't wait that long, so the baby born inna the [police] car,” she said.

She recalled how the two policemen “help mi husband put mi in the police car and they tell him say him must come with we — not even mi things never got to go in the car. The baby born up by Winston Jones Highway and one of the police officer assist mi with his scarf to wrap around the baby”, she said.

“I was scared, not for myself, but for the baby. When I got to the hospital, everything was alright,” said the 42-year-old mother of seven.

“Words can't express how I feel because they [police] did a tremendous job. Mi never know say dem would a reach so fast….Dem a godsent!” she exclaimed.

Her spouse, Andrew “Timo” Powell Sr, was overcome with joy when he spoke with the Jamaica Observer last week.

“The vehicle broke down with four of us on-board heading to the hospital. The police were trying to get us to the hospital as quick as possible. They did their best and I appreciate that very much. My son is handsome, and everything is okay — and I thank God for that,” he said.

Constable Neish, who spoke on behalf of his colleague Constable Clarke, said the experience was nerve-wracking, but also joyful.

“We were on highway patrol duties and we got the call [for assistance] from our control centre. When we met them at Hatfield and I opened the back door where the lady was, I realised that I was seeing the baby's head,” he said.

“When she was in the police unit we tried to keep her at a 45-degree angle and, whilst on our way, the lady kept saying 'The baby is coming out' and [we] realised that once the baby came out we would need something to wrap him in. I had on a scarf so I took it off and we swaddled the baby with it,” he said.

“When we reached the hospital the doctor came out and did the rest from there. It was a nervous moment and a joyful one to know that we were able to assist the family. I kept asking the doctor if the baby is okay and when I heard the baby cry out I said, 'Okay, the baby is alive,' ” he added.

Being a father gave Neish an added perspective.

“As I was standing outside the hospital I was grateful, as I have a daughter who was born about six months ago and it kept reminding me that it could have been my daughter [and] her mother...in distress,” he said.

“I was glad that, as police officers, we could have assisted,” he added.

Head of the Manchester Police, Superintendent Gary Francis is among those who have commended the officers.

“Our police, we go above and beyond the call of duty to safeguard our citizens in every possible way — which is evident in the duties done by constables Neish and Clarke,” Francis said.


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