World greets 300 millionth American

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October 16, 2006

300 million Americans.

That's the milestone the number-crunchers say we'll hit sometime tomorrow.

We are just hours away from the three hundred millionth American being born. Hard to believe over the last one hundred years our population has increased three times its size.

In 1917 we were at 100 million.

In 1967 we reached 200 million.

And tomorrow it'll be 300 million.

News 12's Lynnsey Gardner spent some time with Amanda Hennings, a new Augusta mother who gave birth just hours ago.

Kalynn Amanda Hennings entered the world at 5:01 this evening, missing the big number by just a few hours. The world she will grow up in is much different than any of us could ever imagine.

"Too bad she wasn't the one, huh?" said Donald Kahn, Amanda's father and Kaylnn's "Poppa".

Baby Kalynn missed being the three hundredth million American by just hours.

"She kept holding off...she wanted to be a star," said Kaylnn's aunt, Beth Guin.

And Donald says he still can't believe how much we have grown.

"Two hundred million wasn't that long ago," he said.

That milestone was only 39 years ago. Back then, a new home cost $24,000, gas was only $0.33 a gallon, and a first class stamp cost you a nickel.

"It's a lot more hectic world, more demanding on children," Donald said. "You got to learn more and learn quicker. Everything has gone computerized. For my kids, there was no such thing as a computer. When they were getting into school, calculators had just come out!"

Computers, calculators, school...all things that Kalynn doesn't have to think about just yet. But her mother Amanda still worries about what the future may hold.

"With everything going on right now in the world now, they are going to have a challenge," she said.

No matter how big the world gets, Kalynn's family says they hope she remembers what's important.

"Life is beautiful," Donald said. "It's great to get up and get started everyday. I hope they have an easier life than I did."

And if we think the world has changed a lot recently, just imagine what life might be like for Kalynn when she graduates high school in 2024.

While we wait for the birth of the 300 millionth American, the 200 millionth person, a 38-year-old Chinese-American, says he'll be glad to pass the torch.

Robert Woo, a lawyer from Atlanta, was born on November 20, 1967 at Atlanta's Crawford W. Long Memorial Hospital.

Life Magazine even put his baby picture on the cover.

Woo went to Harvard and became the first Asian-American partner at the King and Spalding law firm.

He is married and has three children.