Baby delivered at Bernie's Barn

This article submitted by Gary Miller-West Central Tribune on 9/10/96.

Angela and Eliot Bieniek's wedding dance doubled as a baby shower Saturday when a guest went into premature labor.

Guests at the celebration and other patrons of Bernie's Barn in Paynesville delivered Lisa Sperl's son in an employee's restroom at the restaurant.

The baby, Andrew, weighed 4 pounds, 9 ounces when he was born. He was transferred Monday from the Paynesville Hospital to Children's Health Care-St. Paul for observation.

Lisa and her husband, Ken, live in Cottage Grove, a St. Paul suburb.

Andrew is doing fine, his father reported during a telephone interview Monday night.

"They want to check him out and see that he gains weight," Ken said.

When Lisa became ill at the gathering, her mother-in-law remembered that a relative, Sherri Allen of Clarissa, is a licensed practical nurse. Allen went to the manager's office, where Lisa was resting.

"I asked a waitress to call 911.

"Whether she was having the baby or not, it was obvious Lisa needed to see a doctor," Allen said during a telephone interview Monday.

Allen helped Lisa make it to the bathroom, where it became apparent that the baby was on its way.

Allen was relieved when Mary Ann Schmidt, a registered nurse at the Paynesville Area Hospital, arrived.

Schmidt and her husband had just sat down at a table at Bernie's when a waitress told her a woman was having a baby in the bathroom.

While Schmidt handled the delivery, Allen coached and comforted the mother.

Andrew came into the world feet first, Schmidt said.

Randy Mortensen, a Willmar resident and member of the Kandiyohi County Rescue Squad for years, was out in the parking lot talking with some relatives when he saw an ambulance arrive.

"When I got there, the nurse said it was a breech birth," Mortensen said. "I got some gloves and assisted."

Andrew had a weak heart beat and wasn't breathing at first.

While Schmidt fed the newborn oxygen, Mortensen performed chest compressions to assist Andrew's feeble pulse.

"As they were leaving Bernie's Barn, the baby started to cry," Allen said. "It was a very emotional experience."

Once the baby started breathing on his own, his condition improved rapidly, Mortensen said.·

"It kind of all happened at once," Lisa said of Andrew's birth.

"He's eating well," Lisa said of her son who was due in mid-October.

(Reprinted with permission from the West Central Tribune, Willmar.)

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