Port Authority Agent George McCann Delivers Baby Inside Holland Tunnel
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Nassim Mohammed Elkarhat is 6 pounds, 9 ounces. He arrived Wednesday, not only six weeks early, but in a shocking rush, in rush hour tunnel traffic.
“I never thought I’d experience something so wonderful,” Port Authority Bridge and Tunnel agent George McCann told CBS 2′s Dave Carlin.
McCann as been with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for 34 years, but now he can say he’s also delivered a baby. And if that’s not odd enough, he did so just steps away from his workplace at the mouth of the Holland Tunnel.
Dad, Abdel, was desperate to get wife, Soukaina, from their home in Lodi, N.J., to Lutheran Medical Center in Brooklyn, but baby Nassim had other plans.
The couple raced into the tunnel entrance on the New Jersey side, just as Nassim was making his entrance. Frantic, they pulled over right away just over the border into New York and across from a Port Authority security booth.
“He was saying, ‘Please help my wife! Please help my wife! She’s having a baby,’” McCann said. “She was in the passenger seat of the vehicle. I had one of the guys lay the seat back so I could get at the mother.
“The head was already out and the body was coming. I took the baby, put the baby on top of the chest of the mom and checked on the response of the baby to make sure the baby was alive.He cringed so I knew everything was all right,” McCann said.
But Nassim was blue, and needed extra oxygen. McCann had to improvise with a wool blanket.
“You have to create a tent with oxygen. That’s what we did,” McCann said.
Later at the hospital, McCann presented Nassim’s mom a Port Authority ball cap for her son to grow in to. Then he checked in on the baby he delivered.
Also looking on was McCann’s right-hand man during the birth, his fellow agent Jean Bernard.
“We were glad we were there,” Bernard said.
The parents, who were too tired to go on camera, sent down words of gratitude from the hospital room — that these Port Authority professionals are heroes and will forever be their light at the end of their tunnel.
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