Father delays Army entry but still misses birth of 2011's first baby

Gabrielle Glover is a few days premature and doing fine, but her father was at breakfast when she made her debut.

Heather Glover, right, holds Gabrielle Nicole Glover, the first baby born in the new year at a Gainesville hospital, while Dustin Glover, left, plays with the couple's 20-month-old daughter, Isabelle. Gabrielle was born at 5:39 a.m. on Saturday at Shands at the University of Florida.

Brad McClenny/Staff photographer
Published: Saturday, January 1, 2011 at 4:17 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 1, 2011 at 4:17 p.m.

Dustin Glover delayed basic training with the Army to see the birth of his daughter.

She surprised him by coming early, in the process becoming the first baby born in a Gainesville hospital in 2011.

Gabrielle Nicole Glover was born at Shands at the University of Florida at 5:39 a.m., later than typical for the new year's first baby. Dustin Glover actually missed the birth itself, as his wife, Heather, had told him to get breakfast because labor was going to take several hours longer.

“Nine minutes later, I got a call to tell me to come meet my daughter,” he said.

The baby's due date was Jan. 5, but Heather Glover came to Shands on New Year's Eve because of a headache and high blood pressure. A decision to induce labor was made at around 8:30 p.m.

Nine hours later, Dustin Glover went downstairs to eat something. The doctor checked on Heather Glover, and found the baby had already emerged to her shoulders.

The rest of the birth went too quickly for Dustin Glover to return in time.

“I gave half a push and that was it,” Heather Glover said.

Gabrielle was 8 pounds, 5 ounces, and 20 inches at birth. The distinction of being the year's first baby comes with the added bonus of a unique birth date: 1/1/11.

“You can't forget it,” Dustin Glover said.

Dustin Glover, 25, of Ocala will get to spend the next few months caring for the girl as well as his other daughter, 20-month-old Isabelle. Heather Glover, 27, will return to work as a paraprofessional educator. The job entails working one on one with Forest High School students who have physical disabilities.

Dustin Glover had worked in the construction industry before the recession dried up work. He joined the Army with the idea of making it a career.

He'll likely leave in March for basic training, possibility at a base in Missouri. After that, it's advanced armory training and likely deployment to Iraq or Afghanistan.

While Heather Glover is unenthusiastic about him leaving, she appreciates the stability and benefits that the job provides.

“I have to think about it from the adult point of view,” she said.

After a birth full of surprises, she has a simple new year's resolution.

“No more kids,” she said.

Contact Nathan Crabbe at 338-3176 or nathan.crabbe@gvillesun.com.

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