Couple share baby’s birth 7,600 miles apart

first_imgJodi Carter, 27, had the idea to do a Webcast of the delivery after using a Web camera to keep Michael, 42, in touch with their sons, Devon, 5, and Malachi, 3. The couple set up the camera before Michael deployed about nine months ago.“My youngest son was just about to turn 3 and I did not want to come back and be a stranger to him,” Michael said via e-mail.Jodi worked with staff at the hospital to make sure using the camera for the birth would be possible.“They were so amazing,” Jodi said. “I kind of just called on a whim, not knowing if they would be able to do it. I was just so amazed.”Johnie Stamps, technical services director for the Information Solutions Department at the hospital, worked with the Carters to plan the birth, ensuring that the hospital’s firewalls and other Internet security would not interfere with the video connection. “I’ve been in health care for probably 10 years now and we’ve never been involved in anything like this,” Stamps said. “For PIH to go the extra mile on this is really unique.”DeLong said that while the request to rig a live feed in a delivery room is unusual, she was happy to help the Carters. According to DeLong, the hospital would make an effort to assist any patient in need.“We’re very community-focused, and if there is a special situation, they shouldn’t hesitate to ask if we can accommodate them,” DeLong said.The Carters have been married for seven years. Jodi grew up in La Habra and Whittier, and met Michael at church when she was a young girl. They now live in La Mirada.“I’ve had a crush on him since I was 12,” Jodi said.Michael, a career military man who has served for 24 years, learned that Jodi was pregnant just days before his deployment in January.He said Jodi’s strength, and support from family and friends, have sustained the couple and their boys through his wife’s pregnancy.“Jodi has been handling things very well. Fortunately we have been able to stay in contact and family, friends, neighbors and church members have been there to give support,” Michael said. “She has had some trying times but through it all she has endured and overcome.”Stationed in the Kurdish region of Iraq as an adviser for an Iraqi military academy, Michael expects to return home in May or June of next year.He said he hopes to establish a pen pal program between an Iraqi school and one in California.“I would like to work on establishing contact with one of the local schools, so they could learn about each other and their different ways of life,” Michael said.Jodi said she is concerned by the anti-soldier sentiments she hears at home, and wants the community to know that soldiers are giving up their lives to serve in Iraq.“I understand a lot of people don’t support the war, and that’s fine,” Jodi said. “But they’re losing their family time and putting themselves on the line.”[email protected](562) 698-0955, Ext. 3015160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! WHITTIER – Makayla Carter, now 6 days old, is already an international media sensation. The little girl’s birth at Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital was broadcast live via the Web last Thursday so her father, deployed Master Sgt. Michael Carter, could participate in his daughter’s birth from his post in Iraq.“It was exciting to imagine that he was so far away, and being able to still be a part of this special moment,” said Valerie DeLong, assistant clinical coordinator for Labor and Delivery.DeLong, who was present for the birth, said it was as if Carter — about 7,600 miles away — had been in the room when Makayla was born.last_img read more