Amelia Jean Gilmore took her first breath at 8:58 p.m. on Wednesday, December 14 and became a tiny piece of history. Amelia, who weighed in at just 7 pounds and 11 ounces, became the first baby born at the new Milbank Area Hospital Avera. The hospital had officially opened just hours earlier.
Amelia’s parents are Katie, a second grade teacher at Koch School and optometrist, Dr. Nicholas Gilmore of Milbank. Katie was due on Friday, December 16, but it was a mystery whether she would deliver in the old or the new hospital. “Finn was three weeks early, so we have been prepared for weeks,” Nick said.
Arriving home after a long day of moving, Dr. Nanci Van Peursem got the call to head back to the hospital. Katie and Nick were on their way. They arrived at 8:15 p.m. and gave birth shortly after. “It went super fast,” Katie stated. “I just had an appointment on Tuesday. Dr. Van Peursem told me it could be any day and if I went into labor on moving day, we would all get through it. But I thought ‘what are the odds of that?’ “But here we are today.” “We did not know the gender and were surprised it was a girl,” Katie said. “Everything went so smoothly.”
Natalie Gauer, hospital administrator, said the hospital was ready when the Gillmores arrived, but not everything was quite in place. “A few things such as garbage cans were still coming off the moving truck, but the important things were here.” Nick stated, “The staff was excellent even if everything wasn’t 100% ready.”
Amelia Jean will now join her family, including her big brother Finn who is nearly three years old, and the history book of the Milbank Hospital .