Baby born in parking lot
Finally, Klickitat Valley Health (KVH) has a new maternity ward. It's in their parking lot.
At least it was early last Wednesday morning for Katy Gilliam. The local third-grade teacher gave birth at 1:30 a.m. in her van in the KVH parking lot, with only her three daughters in attendance.
Her husband, Doug, had raced into the KVH Emergency Room to get help, but their new son, Graham, was already in his mother's arms by the time he got back to the car-after being gone only about 30 seconds.
Mother and child were quickly admitted to KVH. Not being equipped with maternity supplies, the hospital had to search for blankets for the baby. Mother and child were just fine. KVH spokesman Jeff Teal, honoring the hospital's policy of not speaking of patients' conditions without direct permission from the patient, reported in a single sentence that captured the essence of the moment: "Mother and child were treated and released."
The baby was about 13 days overdue, and plans had been to deliver at Mid Columbia Medical Center (MCMC) in The Dalles, since KVH has no maternity facilities. The Gilliams had an appointment for Wednesday morning at MCMC. But at about 12:30 Wednesday morning, Katy Gilliam began to experience stomach discomfort. At 1 a.m., she awakened her husband, Doug, who immediately began calling both sets of parents, to arrange for someone to come and watch their daughters. His parents did not hear the phone ringing. Katy's mother, Pat Eichner, immediately set out from her home in Carson.
In the meantime, Katy's contractions quickly became more intense and were happening one right after the other. Doug went to wake up the girls and get them ready to go. In that short time, Katy's water broke, and she felt an overwhelming urge to push. Doug responded, saying, "Don't push! Don't push!" He called KVH to report the situation and tell them they were on their way there, since there was clearly no way they would make it to The Dalles.
The family raced the short distance to KVH and pulled up right in front of the Emergency Room entrance. As they pulled up, Katy reported that she could feel the baby's head. Doug again responded, "Don't push!" Apparently, nature had other plans.
Doug raced through the ER doors and quickly rounded up help, including Dr. Dagmar Crosby. Thirty seconds later, on his return to the van, he saw Katy sitting in the passenger seat holding her new baby boy.
"I was shocked, to say the least," Katy reports. "Two pushes and there he was!" It had been one hour from her first contraction to the baby's birth. "There were no complications, and Graham is perfect," she says. "Never underestimate the power of a woman's endorphins!"
The baby was pink and healthy, and the cord was cut there in the parking lot. Throughout the day Wednesday, the Gilliams report that hospital staff kept calling their new son the "parking lot baby."
Eichner says Dr. Crosby was "just wonderful. It was a top-notch job. The nurses, everyone was very helpful."
Graham was seven pounds 11 ounces.
Doug is a corrections sergeant at the sheriff's office. His parents are Janet, who teaches math at Goldendale High School, and Dave, an RN at KVH.
Police make key arrests in burglary cases
The arrest of two Goldendale men cleared up most of the burglary cases for area police last week.
On Friday, Matt Mowatt, 19, and Dusty Herberholz, 18, were arrested and charged with nine counts of burglary, 10 counts of malicious mischief, three counts of theft over $750, and eight counts of theft between $250-$750. Both have previous records with law enforcement, including a conviction for arson at the grain elevator in Goldendale, for which Mowatt recently served jail time.
Police Chief Rick Johnson said, "Sentry Foods tellers really broke the case for us." He credits them with recognizing something amiss when Herberholz purchased items with a wad of money that turned out to be stolen from one of the burglarized businesses.
Pressure from the police in recent days spooked the pair, who dumped most of their bounty in a creek and at Avery Park. Mowatt admitted to the burglaries and led police to the stolen items.
Among the burglaries attributed to the pair are the two at Allyn's Building Center, two at the Goldendale Swimming Pool, and one each at Father's House, Stage Stop liquor store, General Store, Fine Things, and the car wash next to the IGA. The only recent burglary of a business that is yet to be resolved is a second burglary of Stage Stop liquor in late August, where the culprits were seen on camera fleeing on Highway 97.
According to police, more arrests are in the offing for accomplices to the burglaries.
City council passes new parking regulations
New parking regulations for the city, substantially reorganizing parking parameters and speed limits, were passed at Monday's city council meeting. The existing parking regulation ordinance is to be repealed, and the new one takes effect Oct. 1
Key points in the new ordinance include:
U-turns are unlawful anywhere in the city except at intersections or street ends and are always prohibited at four-way stops.
The speed limit in the school zone-Schuster to Collins; Brooks from Roosevelt to King; King from Brooks to Collins; and Collins from Roosevelt to Schuster-is 20 miles per hour.
The speed limit is 30 miles per hour on the following streets: Simcoe Drive from South Columbus to Highway 97; North Columbus from the bridge overpass for the Little Klickitat River to the north city limits; South Columbus from south city limits to Industrial Park Way; and Bickleton Road from Broadway to the east city limits.
All other streets in the city have a limit of 25 miles per hour.
The ordinance goes into detail on parking, including a length limit for vehicles of 21 feet or longer for diagonal parking and designations of parking limits at various locations in the city. It prohibits school zone parking during loading and unloading times on school days at the following locations: on Schuster on both sides of the street from the southernmost driveway entrance at the Head Start Building to the northernmost driveway entrance into the primary school parking lots; the south side of Collins and the west side of King Street adjacent to the middle school buildings; and the west side of Roosevelt adjacent to the high school buildings.
In other discussion at the meeting, Police Chief Rick Johnson reported on the recent arrests in area burglary cases. He reported that a security camera at a business was pivotal, since it caught suspects paying for goods with a stack of 70 crisp, new $1 bills. He said the police had retrieved a lot of stolen goods, including some dumped in a ditch near Biggs Junction.
In a comment directed to Johnson, council member Tom Cuff asked the chief why the council was finding out police information from the local newspaper, rather than directly from him. "I'd like to see better communication between the council and the police department," Cuff said. "Everyone in town knew what was going on except the council. We've got to be made more aware of what's going on. We don't know anything until we read about it in the newspaper." Johnson responded that he provided reports at each council meeting and offered to make calls to council members in the event of significant developments between meetings.
The city water project is proceeding on schedule, according to a council report. There has been a lot of graffiti painted on the Ekone Park gazebo and play equipment; even the rest rooms were substantially vandalized, with "stuff smeared all over, even on the ceilings." A discussion ensured on the possibility of acquiring a video surveillance system.
Something needs to be done about parking at the Glass Onion, a council member said. "If cars are parked right near the hedges, you can't even pull out onto Darland."
City Administrator Larry Bellamy reported on the proposed water rate increases which received a public hearing at the last council meeting. Three options for an increase structure have been submitted, and a vote to pass the new rates is anticipated at the next council meeting. Bellamy also addressed the process for creating the city budget for 2010. "By Oct. 5 I'm required to present a proposed initial budget," he said. A city council meeting was set to hold a workshop on the budget for Oct. 12.
In other council action, a bid award for the East Central Neighborhood Improvement Project was approved and awarded to Cascade Equipment and Construction, in the amount of $2,076,235.21. Council member Mike Montayne expressed disappointment that the city had to award the contract to Cascade, "given his work history," he said. "But we have to take the low bid for contractors."
A proposal to make improvements in the animal control shelter was discussed and referred to the budget committee. The facility seeks a new building for its cage/kennel area, conversion of the existing kennel to an office, creation of a parking area, and putting up fencing. Presently the shelter has one 24-feet by 48-feet building with 10 cages. It has a hot water heater and a sink but no bathroom, no office, and limited storage area.