SPARTA, NJ- Something joyful to talk about. Sparta Police Officers Brian Porter, Chris Favaro and Cpl. Kurt Morris will be telling this story for a while. They were called to the home of Lindsey Schlott and Brad Scheller on March 24 and ended up delivering a baby.
Dylan Charlie Scheller was born at 12:10 greeted to the world, not only by mom and dad but the three officers as well.
Dad Brad Scheller said they had been concerned if the baby came late, he would not be allowed to be there because of the coronavirus precautions at the hospital. They had worked with their doula and obstetrician “trying a few techniques” to encourage labor.
“Lindsey has unbelievable crazy high pain tolerance,” Scheller said. Labor began slowly but when it progressed to the point that the doctor told them to come to the hospital, she quickly realized that was not possible. “The contractions had gotten too strong and she said she 'felt like the baby is coming now’” Scheller said.
Scheller did what many first time dad’s to be would do; he called his mother-in-law. She advised him to call 9-1-1. “I don’t know why I didn’t think of that,” Scheller said.
Schlott, resting on the bathroom floor at this point, was thinking more clearly. She already had the doctor on the phone using her Apple watch according to Scheller.
"She is very organized," Scheller said. He said she had "planned out everything."
“Dr. G thought this was the coolest thing and had the whole hospital listening,” Scheller said. “He was encouraging us, telling us ‘you got this.' He was loving it.”
The three officers arrived to help mom and dad. With all the coaches in the room Schlott asked for a little break, Scheller said. With a few breaths she was ready.
"Having gone on calls like these in the past and all being false alarms, you never think you will actually have to roll your sleeves up and deliver a baby,” Morris said. “Thankfully with the assistance of the doctor on the cell phone, I was able to help deliver a healthy baby boy."
Using Morris’ knife, at the doctor’s urging, they had to break Schlott’s amniotic sack. After that it was two pushes and Dylan was born, Scheller said.
"I think we were all surprised when we arrived on scene to learn how far along the mother was, as this was her first child,” Favaro said. “Our first job was to keep mom and dad as calm as possible and assure them we were going to help them deliver their baby boy. Mom and dad were definitely concerned and very worried knowing they weren’t going to make it to the hospital. Our main concern was the safety of the baby and mother.”
“It was scary at first because I saw the cord was around his neck but I took it off and put him on Lindsey’s chest,” Scheller said. Dylan did not cry at first but then was fine, dad said.
They put mom and baby in the ambulance for a ride to Morristown Medical Center where everyone checked out fine.
“I’m so grateful for the three officers,” Scheller said. “They weren’t afraid and just dealt with everything. Three guys in a little bathroom. It was unbelievable.”
The officers also left a couple of mementos: Morris' knife and a bracelet Porter was wearing.
“A medical call turned into an experience none of us will ever forget,” Porter said. “I'm very thankful we were able to safely deliver the baby and I’m looking forward to watching him grow up in town throughout my career.”
Favaro said, “Cpl. Morris, Ptl. Porter and I used our training to deliver the baby safely and successfully. I’m just happy we were there for the family and help them bring their baby boy into the world."
Following the Jewish tradition, the baby’s name came from his family tree, though Morris “busted my chops” about naming him after the officers, Scheller said.
"In the midst of everything currently going on it’s always good to have something like this happen," Morris said.
The coronavirus has even reached into this event. Grandparents had been quarantining themselves so they were not able to be there to see the baby. Dylan’s parents, in addition to adjusting to their new family, have also been adjusting to working from home. They were unable to have a traditional bris because they did not want to risk bringing in the mohel from Staten Island. "It was disappointing but more important to be safe," Scheller said.
As for Dylan, “he sleeps great,” dad said.
Scheller is a tennis instructor at Lake Mohawk County Club and other clubs in the area. The couple married in 2014 and have lived in Sparta for about seven years.