January 13 was no ordinary work day for Jennifer Bandy and Yolanda Butler.
Jennifer is a cook at the Park Café inside Lexington Medical Park 1 at Lexington Medical Center. Yolanda is a pharmacy technician at Lexington Oncology, a Lexington Medical Center physician practice.Just before sunrise, they heard shouts for help from the building’s entrance.
Running toward the door, they found Danielle Tilson of Batesburg about to deliver a baby. Her fiance Byron Stewart was by her side.
“Everything was happening so fast,” Jennifer said. “I knew we had to do something.”
Yolanda stepped in right away.
“I was reassuring Mom that everything was OK,” she said.
Minutes later, the café cook and pharmacy technician delivered baby Serenity Stewart in the lobby. They laid the little girl on tablecloths from the café and a blanket from Danielle and Byron’s car.
“She started blinking her eyes and moving – and that was a good feeling because we knew she was OK,” Jennifer said.
They learned Danielle and Byron were on their way to a hospital in downtown Columbia from their home in Batesburg, but didn’t think they could make it in time. So the couple pulled up to the Lexington Medical Park 1 entrance at Lexington Medical Center – the first entrance they saw on the hospital campus. Early in the morning, hardly anyone was there – except for the Park Café staff and Yolanda, who just happened to come into work early that day.
Serenity is the couple’s fourth child. Everyone is doing well.
The couple is thankful for Jennifer and Yolanda’s quick response and willingness to help. They say they will bring Serenity back to the hospital to meet them one day.