A Lake Villa woman said she is “forever grateful” for the Lake Villa firefighters and paramedics who helped her deliver her baby earlier this month.
Nina Purtell told Lake and McHenry County Scanner that she wanted to share a feel-good story following the mass shooting in Highland Park on July 4.
Purtell was pregnant with her third child and in early labor during the holiday weekend.
Hours after the Highland Park shooting — on the opposite side of Lake County — Purtell was celebrating the Fourth of July with neighbors who were lighting off their annual fireworks in Lake Villa.
Purtell said her water broke and she went into active labor.
“It being my 3rd child, things progressed quickly so we called 911,” she said.
The Lake Villa Fire Protection District responded to the call at Purtell’s home.
“Within minutes the Lake Villa Fire Department/EMS team showed up at my house with a full team of people ready to step in and help,” Purtell said.
“Apparently these men and women do not get the opportunity to be involved in many births so everyone seemed eager, although slightly shocked, to be a part of this since reality had sunk in that we would not be making it to the hospital,” she said.
The fire department crew, which Purtell called “amazing,” successfully delivered the woman’s newborn girl, Courtney Paige, at 9:45 p.m. on July 4.
“Given the unfortunate events that occurred in Highland Park on July 4th, I thought the area could use a feel-good story about that day and my local fire department/EMS team definitely deserves some recognition for how fantastic they handled the situation,” she said.
“It was such a beautiful moment in the midst of a very emotionally tolling day. I am forever grateful to the people of this outstanding department and cannot wait for them to meet the new life they helped my family bring into this world,” Purtell added.