‘Put him back in — we’re not there yet’: Routt County woman gives birth in her Subaru just minutes from hospital
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Subarus in Steamboat Springs have been a popular vehicle among locals for a variety of reasons, most of them outdoor-related, but last week, a woman found a new use for hers when she gave birth in it on her way to the UCHealth Yampa Valley Medical Center.
Dory Myler, a Steamboat native with the quintessential car to prove it, celebrated the healthy arrival of her son, James Sanger, on July 13, after a hectic late-night rush to the hospital.
“They were intense and about two minutes apart,” she said.
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Myler, who also has an 8-year-old daughter, knew that such frequent contractions were a sign she did not have long to seek medical attention. She awoke her boyfriend Joshua Sanger, the baby’s father, who helped Myler into their 1999 Subaru Impreza, then sped away.
Initially, Sanger, a first-time father, considered the contractions a false alarm. Myler was 37 weeks pregnant at the time — the average pregnancy is 40 weeks — and she had an appointment for an induced labor the following week.
“I didn’t think that we were going to have a baby, yet,” he said, “especially in the car.”
But as they turned from Colorado Highway 131 to U.S. Highway 40, Myler’s water broke. She was trying as hard as possible not to push, but she could feel the baby’s head emerging. About 4 miles of the journey remained, a 10-minute drive, according to Google Maps.
“I didn’t know what to do, so I just kind of pushed him back in there,” she said. “Then I told my boyfriend to drive as fast as he possibly could.”
As they veered onto Central Park Drive, about a block from the hospital, Myler could not hold on any longer. Getting on all fours, still in the passenger seat, she gave birth, catching her son in her arms.
Sanger looked over from the driver’s seat and half-joked, “Put him back in — we’re not there yet.”
Fewer than five minutes later, they arrived at the hospital entrance where a team of nurses awaited them with a wheelchair.
“They were expecting us, but they weren’t expecting a baby already born,” Myler said.
Nurses checked on the infant, who weighed in at 5 pounds, 1 ounce, according to Myler.
“He was completely healthy, and I was healthy,” she said.
Since entering the world, James has been a relatively easy baby to care for, Myler added. He sleeps often and cries little — a quality many parents would envy — but he grows stronger and more vocal by the day.
Sanger is still getting used to fatherhood and has been busy hosting family members who visited town to see his newborn son.
“It’s all brand-new, but it’s cool to have a little boy, my little boy,” he said. “And here he is, safe and sound.”
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