Someone You Should Know: Turner Co. Deputy Helps Deliver Baby
PARKER, S.D. – Law enforcement officers are trained to be prepared for any kind of situation, but it’s not often they’re asked to deliver a baby.
“I never anticipated it, but I’m happy to have the experience,” said Deputy Colter Hendirx.
Saturday morning started out like any other for the Turner County Deputy.
“I was patrolling in Parker and about 8:30, 8:35 a.m. I got dispatched to a woman in labor call.”
Just a few blocks away, Jessica and Daniel Leveille were in a pickle.
“I got into the car, and I looked at Dan and I said, ‘I don’t think we’re going to make it.’ And he said, ‘We’re going to make it,’ and asked me to move my leg and he shut the door,” said Jessica. “I opened the door and said ‘We are not going to make it.”
Not due until December 20th, their fifth child was making an early entrance.
The couple made it as far as their backyard before calling 9-1-1 to ask for help.
“And next thing we know, Colter pulled in the alley and he comes out and he’s like, “Do you think you can lay down on the ground?’ Nope. No, we’re beyond that Colter,” said Jessica.
“It was apparent that the baby was coming, whether we liked it or not,” said Deputy Hendrix. “So I did my best and helped the little guy arrive.”
Within minutes, 7lb 3oz Decker James Leveille was born with all 10 fingers and toes.
A smooth delivery, given the circumstances, and thanks to Deputy Hendrix’s help.
“It seemed like he knew exactly what he was doing,” said Jessica. “I don’t know if he did, but he played it off that way!”
“We have about 15 minutes of training on how to deliver a baby,” said Deputy Hendirx. “But most of it was instinct I’d say. Or just guessing.”
The Deputy says it was dispatch on the line – and having two kids of his own – that helped his nerves in that moment.
The two were reunited just four days after Deckard’s dramatic arrival, to formally meet.
“He still wasn’t too happy to see me, but it was special to see that he was happy and healthy and it was an overall success,” said Deputy Hendirx.
The experience is one Deputy Hendrix calls a highlight of his career.
For Jessica and little Deckard, meeting Deputy Hendrix is now the highlight of their lives.
“I want to say that I was super mom and everything went smoothly and that, but just thinking about what could have went wrong, and I’m just so grateful that Colter was there,” she said.
Baby Deckard also got to meet Turner County Sheriff Steven Luke, who gave Deckard a sticker badge, and named the 5-day-old Turner County’s newest – and most famous – honorary deputy.