Good Samaritan helps Port Richmond mother deliver baby

PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) A Port Richmond mother has a Good Samaritan to thank for helping deliver her baby.

When Maggie Clark's water broke nearly 2 weeks before her due date, she thought she'd at least have time to make it to the hospital. Well, the baby had other plans.

With the help of her mother, who had seven kids of her own, Clark gave birth to her new son, Tomas James, in the passenger seat of her mother's Kia Rio at the Speedway gas station on Broad Street in North Philly. And if that wasn't enough, as the baby was born a complete stranger who we have learned is homeless appeared to help. His name is Shorty

Shorty helped in a big way, he talked to 911 dispatchers, then took the laces from his own shoes to tie the umbilical cord. He also waited until an ambulance arrived.

"He was very happy. Delighted and helpful," said grandmother Phyllis Kaiser.

FOX 29 tracked Shorty down and found him cleaning car windows for cash at the very same gas station he helped deliver Tomas just 12 hours earlier.

"They walked us through it to get the baby out. And then, they asked me to tie the umbilical cord. So I took my shoelace off until 911 came," he explained.

Shorty, whose real name is Ben Johnson, says it's the first baby he's ever helped deliver and says he is the one blessed.

"It was the bright of my life. Bright of my day. I was glad just to help. That's what I do around here help everybody," Shortly said.

Shorty even cleaned up the car for the family before being taken to Temple University Hospital. The dad, a rail conductor for SEPTA, says he's glad someone was there for his new son. Maggie can't wait to tell the story of Shorty and the shoelaces to her son someday.


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