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Happy New Year, mom!

Believe it or not, there was a bit of a race to become this year’s New Year’s baby; however, when it was all said and done, there was a clear cut winner – Connor Brent Bass.

Bass, the son of Jade Baldwin and Brent Bass of Loango, was born at 7:55 a.m. Jan. 1. He weighed 7 pounds, 5 ounces and was 21 ½ inches long. He was welcomed home by his big sister, Carlee.

He was one of four babies born that day, said ARH nurse Tracy Cagle.

“It was shaping up to be a race that day, but Connor – he pulled it out with no problems,” Cagle said.

Baldwin said her son’s due date was scheduled for Jan. 14, but on Friday, she knew it wasn’t going to be long before he made his debut.

“I was working (at Marvin’s), and I just started shaking,” she said. “I sat down on the stool they gave me and realized I couldn’t do anything, so I called Brent – he’s the neighborhood butcher at Winn-Dixie – I called him to come and take me home.

The Bass/Baldwin family is shown with Dr. Bang, Dr. Wells, nurse Tracy Cagle and Alan Cotton, who donated a dozen roses in celebration of the event.

“We ended up back (at ARH) about 1 a.m.,” she said. “Brent, he’s a first-time dad, so he was a little worried, but I could tell I wasn’t quite ready to have him yet. Sure enough, they sent us home, but we were back here at 6:50 a.m. and boom, he was here.

“It was very quick. I didn’t expect him so fast, but I guess he was ready to get here,” she said.

As a result of being the New Year’s baby, Bass received a $500 savings bond and gift basket from ARH and a dozen roses from Alan Cotton’s florist.

The happy family hopes to leave the hospital in a day or so. Baldwin said she’s developed a slight fever and won’t be allowed to leave until it’s gone.

As for big sister Carlee, she’s ready for the two to come home, Baldwin said.

“She calls him ‘my baby,’” Baldwin said. “I had bought her a new teddy bear so she wouldn’t feel left out. Sunday, she and my mother left, but Carlee forgot her bear. My mom came back in and said she told Carlee she was coming back in to get her bear. Mom said Carlee said, ‘No. I want my baby.’

“So, needless to say, she’s very excited about her new brother,” she said.