Woman in stuck elevator delivers baby; husband climbs down to help

Posted at 9:02 PM, Jan 18, 2012
and last updated 2012-01-23 17:25:29-05

Talk about making a dramatic entrance — a baby boy was born Wednesday inside a stuck elevator at St. Joseph's Medical Center in Tacoma, and the father climbed down into the elevator to cut the umbilical cord.

The infant's mother, Katie Thacker, was going into labor and was being moved up to the delivery room on the 14th floor in the service elevator. Inside were her, four nurses, her husband, Luke Thacker, and her mother and sister.

The group was supposed to change elevators at the 12th floor to go to the 14th, but when Luke Thacker, Katie's mom and sister and one nurse stepped off at the 12th floor, the doors closed behind them — and the elevator got stuck between floors.

“I was in such hard labor, I was like, 'Are you kidding me?' ” Katie Thacker said afterward. “Then I was like, I can't do this (think about it) — I've got to push.

“And so my water broke and they (the nurses left on the elevator) were like, 'Uh, yeah, your baby's coming.'  And then he was there. It was kind of crazy,” she said.

“I kept laughing, was I really in the elevator with this baby? And my husband and family are gone? Did I really have a baby in an elevator? … It's still sort of surreal to me.”

Luke Thacker was able to monitor the delivery by walkie-talkie and then, when two elevator technicians got the doors open, he was able to climb down into the elevator car to cut the umbilical cord.

Mother, father and baby — a 7-pound, 15-oz boy named Blake — are doing fine.