Speedy, special delivery

Officers step in when baby just won’t wait

By Heather J. Carlson

KASSON — When Leah Klocke started feeling contractions, the mother-to-be figured she had plenty of time. After all, the last time she went into labor it took 16 hours before her daughter, Kaitlyn, was born.

Not so this time.


It all started early Wednesday when the contractions began and Leah woke her husband, Kyle Klocke. The contractions were eight minutes apart, so hospital staff advised the couple to wait until they were five minutes apart, Kyle said.

But at 3:15 a.m., Leah’s water broke. Her husband called 911, and within minutes, two Kasson police officers had arrived.

Officer Don "Butch" Cassidy said it soon became clear the baby was not going to wait for the ambulance.

"Within a couple of minutes, it was very apparent we were going to be delivering a baby. What was going through my mind was, ‘this is certainly going to be a first for me,’" Cassidy said.

Cassidy’s fellow officer, Mike Bodenheim, said he once came close to having to deliver a baby, but the Dodge Center ambulance arrived in time. While both officers had been trained to deliver a baby, neither had done it.

"We’ve read all the books, seen all the movies, but it’s nothing like the real thing," Bodenheim said.

At 3:33 a.m., Leah gave birth to a 9-pound, 2-ounce baby girl in their guest bedroom, with the two officers helping. The Klockes named her Taylor Beth.

On Thursday from a room at Olmsted Medical Center Hospital, the new parents said they were still absorbing all that went on.


"I was in shock, I really was," Kyle said.

The new mother she said she still can’t believe what happened.

"I wanted to do it natural, but not that natural," she said.

As for the officers, the Kasson Police Department plans to honor them with stork pins for their efforts. Both officers said they were just glad they were able to help and that everything went smoothly. A picture of Kyle Klocke holding his newborn daughter proudly is displayed on a police station bulletin board.

"This is going to be one of those career calls that you remember, not the remainder of your career, but the rest of your life," Cassidy said.

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