Ben and Sabrina Keene welcome their first child, Sawyer Francis Keene, born at 11:02 a.m. Sunday at Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington. He is the first baby born at the hospital in the New Year. Jill Gray/Franklin Memorial Hospital

FARMINGTON — Sawyer Francis Keene’s arrival on New Year’s Day came a week earlier than anticipated.

He is the first baby born this year at Franklin Memorial Hospital and the first child of Ben and Sabrina Keene of Farmington. Sawyer weighed 7 pounds, 6.9 ounces and was 21 inches long.

“Sawyer is very happy, very healthy and loves to be held,” his father said.

Ben said he was watching football Saturday when Sabrina started having labor pains. When they got worse the couple went to the hospital about 2 a.m. and Sawyer was born at 11:02 a.m.

“Sabrina’s due date was Jan. 9,” Ben said in a phone interview Monday. “He came a little bit early. It was definitely a surprise.”

“Dr. Tara Aumand of Franklin Health Women’s Care attended the birth,” Jill Gray, the hospital’s communications and public affairs manager wrote in an email Monday. “As Franklin Memorial Hospital’s first baby of 2023, Sawyer’s family received a basket full of items.

“In addition to the distinction of being one of the first babies born in 2023 in Maine, Sawyer will be awarded a $500 Alfond Scholarship Foundation grant (provided to every baby born a Maine resident) that may go toward his future college or training expenses.”

Sabrina works for the Healthy Community Coalition, which is part of FMH; Ben is a property manager for Auburn Mall Apartments in Auburn.

Paternal grandparents are Ken and Shawn Keene of Livermore and maternal grandmother is Suzanne Dickinson of Avon, Connecticut.

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