First local New Year's baby born at University Hospital

Tuesday, January 1, 2019
News 12 @ 6 O’clock / NBC 226 at 7

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Some people rang in the New Year with fireworks, champagne, and a kiss while others welcomed 2019 with a sweet bundle of joy.

"I'm thinking to myself, the closer it got to 12, I was like, we're going to do this," says Amber and Donald Royal.

Of all the hospitals, University delivered the first baby of the new year.

After 15 long hours, out came a baby boy. Cal Lovett Royal was born just 30 minutes after the ball dropped.

"A lot of emotion. When I saw her cry, I couldn't hold it back,” Donald says.

“Tears of joy,” Amber says.

These first-time parents, Amber and Donald Royal, are starting the New Year with an unexpected surprise.

"Yesterday it was just supposed to be a New Year's Eve, come to work, normal day,” Amber recalls.

Amber works as a nurse at University Hospital. Her shift went from her helping patients to becoming a patient herself.

"Excited about what 2019 has to bring for us. Starting off great so hopefully, it's going to be a great year."

Her first born came 5 weeks early weighing 6 pounds 4 ounces. He's having to spend some time in the NICU.

"Everything looks good, we're coming off of oxygen so he's breathing on his own and everything and next step will just be feeding and getting him to our room!"

Dad says his little all-star made it just in time for the Georgia game.

"He's already enrolled in spring football camp and I've already got a few offers from Georgia.”

Just 8 minutes later Doctors Hospital welcomed a baby girl into the world.

It's safe to say New Years won't be the same for these families.

"So our New Years will probably be different from now on. It'll be more birthday related than ‘oh, Happy New Year’, you know."

Cal Lovett Royal was named after mom's twin brother who passed away when they were 23. She said she wanted to keep his memory alive in the New Year.