herald

Tuesday 20 August 2019

Baby girl born on board Dublin train on track to get 25 years of free travel

Hero nurse Ellen Kennedy
Hero nurse Ellen Kennedy

Irish Rail will give 25 years of free travel to a baby girl born on the Galway to Dublin train.

Two nurses, a doctor and an American tourist helped a woman to give birth on the 15.05pm train travelling from Ceannt Station in Galway to Heuston, Dublin, yesterday.

A spokesperson for Irish Rail said the baby girl will receive a special gift.

He said she will be given free rail travel for the next 25 years.

"Mother and baby are still recovering and we are mindful of their privacy, but we will make arrangements for free travel for the child up to the 25-year mark," a spokesperson for Irish Rail said.

"We haven't made contact with the mum yet as we are very respectful of her privacy."

The baby was delivered at Kildare Station after a stop-off of 80 minutes.

A spokesperson for Irish Rail said that passengers cheered when they were told about the baby's arrival.

The train, which was full of passengers heading to a Backstreet Boys concert in the 3Arena, was delayed by 80 minutes at the station before it left again for Dublin.

The woman had gone into labour shortly after the train departed Galway.

Commotion

Nurse Ellen Kennedy (23) was one of the heroes who came to the woman's aid.

The Carlow woman was changing trains in Kildare when she noticed a lot of commotion at the station.

"I asked one of the staff if they needed help and I went and helped the mother," she said.

"There was already a nurse there and the doctor arrived 10 minutes later, but the mum did all of the hard work."

The newly qualified nurse works in University Hospital Galway and said that her only training was a week at a labour ward at college.

"I only had a stint at a labour ward and I only saw a baby being delivered once before but the skills came in really handy," she said.

"I stepped into my 'nurse-mode'," she added, laughing.

"I focused on the mum's privacy and put a blanket over her to show some dignity and respect."

Ms Kennedy said after she stepped off the train, she couldn't believe what she had just witnessed.

"I got off the train and as I was leaving, I asked: 'did that really happen?'," she said.

"Then I saw all the articles and comments go up online - you deal with very crazy situations in work and you don't get the same acknowledgement and praise.

"It's not your typical labour ward."

She emphasised the great work by the mother during the delivery.

Surreal

"She did all the work in fairness. She was in such a scary situation and she handled it all very well," Ms Kennedy said.

"It was a very surreal experience. I keep asking myself, did it really happen?"

"It's a great experience to bring a new life into the world."

It's not yet known what the baby's name is or if she will be named after one of the heroes of the day.

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