Houlton couple has first Maine baby of 2019 at Presque Isle hospital
PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Karly Drue Williams doesn’t know it yet, but she’s already set a state record this year.
With her arrival nine minutes after midnight on Jan. 1, she became the first baby to be born in Maine in 2019.
Williams, the daughter of Danielle Doyle and Kyle Williams of Houlton, weighed 8 pounds, 1 ounce, and measured 19 inches long when she arrived at Northern Light AR Gould Hospital in Presque Isle.
“We are just happy and overwhelmed,” Doyle said during a brief interview Monday afternoon. “My past deliveries have always gone pretty quickly, so from the time my water broke to the time she was born, only eight hours had passed.”
Doyle said that after her water broke, the couple drove the 45 miles to the Presque Isle hospital.
According to hospital officials, Doyle was one of three expectant mothers in labor on New Year’s Eve. While the other women had their babies at the end of 2018, Karly Drue Williams held out until 12:09 a.m., just as a winter storm was starting to bear down on Aroostook County.
“The staff was hinting that we could be the first couple to have a baby [in the new year], but we didn’t really think too much about it,” Doyle said.
The baby was delivered by Dr. Quang Nguyen from Northern Light OB/GYN, and arrived on her due date. Doyle said that Karly is the fourth child in the blended family, joining older siblings Blake, Harmonee, and Maliya.
Blake, 6, especially “was so excited when we were getting ready to go to the hospital,” Doyle said. “He slipped some Slim Jims in my pocket to help take care of me and was signing to his sister about the new baby being on the way.”
She said the boy and his nearly 2-year-old sister Maliya are well versed in sign language and that Harmonee, 5, is learning too.
The other children have not yet met their new sibling, as Doyle and Williams were concerned that the roads were too slick for them to make the drive north on Tuesday.
Because Karly was the first baby of the new year, the family received a wealth of gifts from various groups, businesses and organizations, including a quilt, diaper bags, baby wipes, pajamas and blankets.
“It is so stuffed with items that I couldn’t even make it to the bottom earlier today,” she said. “Everyone was very generous.”
Doyle works as a certified nursing assistant at Madigan Estates in Houlton, while Williams works in the woods in Allagash.