LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A Little Rock woman gave birth unexpectedly while staying at a Red Cross-provided shelter.
Tikira Wallace and her mother were displaced following the March 31 tornado.
In the hours after the storm, the Red Cross helped the family find housing at the Courtyard Marriott in downtown Little Rock.
At first it was just a temporary shelter, but soon it would hold a more permanent spot in this family’s story.
On April 23, 2023, Wallace woke up with severe pain in her lower abdomen.
“I knew something was wrong cause I couldn’t lay to the side, I couldn’t lay down at all,” Wallace said.
Wallace was going into labor and didn’t know it. By the time she realized what was happening, her baby was already on its way.
“They were like, you’re not going to make it to the hospital,” Wallace said.
EMT’s were called in to help friends and Red Cross volunteers deliver Wallace’s son.
“All together it was like 4 or 5 pushes, and he was here,” Wallace said.
Red Cross crews call him ‘Little Red Cross’, making Eiress Wallace part of the family.
“You never know, things could have went differently if we didn’t have them,” Wallace said.
As a new mom, Tikira Wallace is soaking in every moment, but this one she says will be hard to forget.
“When he grows up and he finally asks about it I’m going to be like ‘Well son, you have an interesting story, you weren’t born at a hospital or home, you were born in a hotel’,” Wallace said.
Tikira said one of her biggest cheerleaders during the process was a friend she had just met a few weeks ago. She was also staying at the hotel after being displaced from the tornado.