It was a close race, but Michael Paul Ree managed to beat three others for the title of first baby born in 2013 at Trinity Regional Medical Center.
The four new babies kept the medical staff busy over New Year's Eve, said Registered Nurse Kathy Rehmann.
"There was one born just three minutes before midnight, and one this afternoon and one this evening," Rehmann said.
Michael Paul Ree sleeps in his mother, Jessie Ree’s arms wearing a Harley Davidson hat to match his dad’s shirt hours after being born Tuesday while dad Brandon Ree looks on. He was the first baby born in 2013, arriving at 3:35 a.m.
Michael was born to Jessie and Brandon Ree, of Algona, at 3:35 a.m. Tuesday. He is their first baby.
The parents weren't expecting to be the first.
"We got here about 4 o'clock on New Year's Eve day, the 31st. There was actually four moms here laboring," said Jessie Ree. "We were pretty surprised, he wasn't born until about 3:30 and we figured we would have definitely lost out by then."
Plus, the baby wasn't expected until Jan. 12.
"He came early," Jessie Ree said. "He's very healthy. Seven pounds, 4 ounces."
Jessie and Michael said it had been a long couple days.
"We're hoping once we get home we can get some sleep," Jessie Ree said. "We both got up at 5 o'clock on Monday for work. Then I went into labor at work.
"Then he was born at 3:35, and by the time they got everything done it was closer to 5:30."
Then, they had to call the friends and family.
"We've had non-stop company since 9 this morning," she said.
Not that she's complaining.
"We have a good support system."
Plus, her husband has been good at taking care of her.
"He's been very, very good. I couldn't ask for anyone else to be here. He doesn't even complain," she said.
Brandon Ree is a welder, and Jessie Ree is a nurse at Humboldt County Memorial Hospital. They came to Trinity, Jessie said, because she likes the nursery here and she's been seeing her current doctor at Trinity for a long time.
The couple has been married for five years, and are happy to be parents now.
"It's fun," Jessie Ree said. "Well, we've only been parents for like ten hours."
What did she think would be the biggest challenge?
"I don't know," she said. "Just being good parents. We have to give him good morals and a good background, a good base to stand on."