Staff Writer

Leap day babies may be rare, but obstetricians and maternity ward nurses and midwives were busy Feb. 29 in central Maine.

As of early Wednesday night, eight babies has been born on leap day — six in Waterville, one in Skowhegan and one at home in Athens.

Another woman was reported in labor in Waterville Wednesday night and was expected to give birth before the calendar flipped to March 1.

Three of the leapers, or leaplings as people born Feb. 29 are sometimes called, were confirmed born at MaineGeneral Medical Center Thayer Campus in Waterville.

Inland Hospital in Waterville also reported three births, Redington-Fairview General Hospital in Skowhegan confirmed one, and in Athens, a couple welcomed a baby born at home.

What are the odds of being born on leap day?

About one in 1,500, according to various reports.

There are approximately 187,000 leapers in the United States, according to As of Feb. 29, the U.S. population was 313,102,770, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Add Anthony Garrett Crader, Naima Bailey, Deontay Denver Hastings-Hammack, Anna Jane Gagnon, Aydin Michael Wyman, Aaliyah Jade Foss, Pyper Lynn Grenier, and at least one other baby whose name was not available to the tally.

At Inland Hospital, Anthony Garrett Crader was born at 8 a.m. to Lisa McWhorter and Ken Crader of Oakland. The 9-pound, 4-ounce boy is the couple’s second son.

Sara Dyer, director of community relations at Inland, said at 3:45 p.m. Alicia Bailey of Knox gave birth to Naima Bailey and at 6:10 p.m., Deontay Denver Hastings-Hammack was born to Kylie Martin and Richard Hastings-Hammack of Waterville.

In Athens at 8:14 a.m., Anna Jane Gagnon was born at home to parents Aimee and Joel Gagnon. She has three brothers, Titus, 6, Jeremiah, 4, and Silas, 2.

At MaineGeneral’s Thayer Campus at least three leap day babies were delivered.

Aydin Michael Wyman was first. Parents Sierra and Christopher Wyman of Round Pond greeted their second son at 8:22 a.m. Aydin Michael, who joined his brother Logan, 2, has a 60-year-old great uncle in Tennessee born 15 leap years ago.

Pyper Lynn Grenier arrived at 10:35 a.m. She was greeted by parents Joey Grenier and Pearl Whittaker of Waterville and her siblings Sylvio, 15 months, and Landyn, 4.

Melissa Emerson, charge nurse on the maternity ward at Thayer Campus, said Wednesday afternoon that a third baby was born at 1:23 p.m. and that another woman was in labor.

Emerson, who has been at the hospital 25 years, said she did not remember any other leap day like this one.

At Redington-Fairview in Skowhegan, where a baby is born about every 2.5 days, Ciji and Nick Foss of Madison greeted their daughter Aaliyah Jade Foss at 8:23 a.m.

Her due date was March 6.

Doctors, though, scheduled a cesarean section for Wednesday. Ciji Foss said her first child, Kylee Ann was delivered via emergency cesarean section and doctors wanted to ensure she didn’t go into labor this time.

Ciji Foss, 25, who turns 26 on March 11, said special birthdays are kind of routine in her family. Her husband was born on Christmas and Kylee Ann arrived on winter solstice.

Franklin Memorial in Farmington reported that as of Wednesday afternoon, no leap day babies had been born.

Beth Staples — 861-9252

[email protected]

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