Natchez woman assists birth on plane

Published 11:46 pm Wednesday, June 28, 2017

NATCHEZ — A nurse with Natchez roots helped add to the passenger list of a Spirit Airlines flight Saturday when she helped deliver a newborn baby boy.

Dallas nurse and Alcorn State University graduate Rhondula Green, who is originally from Natchez, responded when flight attendants called for medical assistance on a flight between Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and the Dallas-Fort Worth airport.

KDFW-TV in Dallas reported that within 10 to 15 minutes after the plane took off Cristina Penton of Phoenix, who was 36 weeks pregnant, felt she was having contractions.

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Green and a pediatrician on board responded to the call for help.

“By the time I was getting my gloves on, the head was starting to crown,” Green said.

The flight was diverted to New Orleans, but the baby was born before the plane could land.

“He popped out, literally,” Green said. “Like, we barely caught him then we just gave him to her.”

Penton named her son Christoph, although some passengers reffered to him as the ‘Spirit Baby,” the Dallas Morning News reported.

“He did what he wanted,” Penton said. “We were just along for the ride.”

Spirit Airlines gave Christoph and a guest a lifetime of free birthday flights on the airline.