Baby Born on Evacuation Plane Gets Fitting Name

Meet Reach, named for the C-17 aircraft with 'Reach 828' call sign
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 27, 2021 7:47 AM CDT
Baby Born on Evacuation Plane Gets Fitting Name
Medical support personnel from the 86th Medical Group and Landstuhl Regional Medical Center help the Afghan mother off the C-17 moments after she delivered Reach on Saturday at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.   (Air Mobility Command Public Affairs, via Military Times)

The name of a baby girl born last weekend aboard a military aircraft evacuating her mother out of Afghanistan has been revealed—and it's in honor of the plane that carried her family away from the Taliban-seized country. Gen. Tod Wolters, the head of the US European Command, told reporters Wednesday that the infant born Saturday has been named Reach, after the "Reach 828" call sign for the C17 aircraft, per the AP. Although two other babies have been born over the last week to evacuee parents, those two made their way into the world at a German hospital, making Reach the only newborn to claim "born on a plane" honors.

The baby was born in the plane's cargo bay after the aircraft landed at Germany's Ramstein Air Base. At one point, the pilot descended to a lower altitude to help increase the plane's air pressure, which in turn helped stabilize the low blood pressure of the mother, who'd gone into labor during the flight. US Army Captain Erin Brymer, the registered nurse who delivered Reach, was "expecting the worst, hoping for the best," she tells CNN. "When I evaluated the patient, we were past the point of no return," she recalls. "That baby was going to be delivered before we could possibly transfer [the mother] to another facility." Brymer says she knew all would be well when "the baby came out screaming."

Meanwhile, Wolters—who notes the baby is in good condition, as is her family—has big hopes for this infant. "As you can well imagine, being an Air Force fighter pilot, it's my dream to watch ... Reach grow up and be a US citizen and fly United States Air Force fighters in our Air Force," he joked during his presser. The Military Times notes there's no word on what the other two babies were named. (More Afghanistan stories.)

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