CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A mother gave birth to a healthy baby girl Wednesday afternoon shortly after landing at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport.
Airport Medic crews were called to help the woman after an American Airlines flight from Tampa landed around 1:20 p.m.
American Airlines released a statement, saying, “Upon landing in Charlotte, American Airlines Flight 868 from Tampa, requested MEDICS due to a passenger who needed assistance.”
Officials said the baby was delivered around 2 p.m. Both the girl and the mother were taken to a hospital after the delivery.
Channel 9's Anthony Kustura talked to the child's mother Nereida Araujo from her hospital bed, just one day after the hectic delivery.
She said everything happened so quick. Araujo, her husband and her then two kids were traveling from Tampa to Pennsylvania for Thanksgiving. They said they had a short, 20-minute layover in Charlotte.
"I was sleeping and I felt like a pop in my lower back," Araujo said. "I just felt like liquid and I woke my husband up."
She said she knew her water broke and her baby was on the way -- 11 days early. Araujo said her doctor and the airline both cleared her to fly, even though she was 38 weeks pregnant.
Fortunately, a passenger with medical know-how helped the new mom of three through the whole process.
"There was a lady there, she was so sweet," Araujo said. "She helped me with my breathing and everything."
The pilots expedited the landing and with first responders waiting, Araujo delivered a healthy baby girl within minutes.
"I just want to thank them so much," Araujo said. "Everybody was so great. They're like my heroes. It was an experience that I will always remember."
The small miracle born at Charlotte Douglas Airport was given a fitting name for her story -- Lizyana Sky Taylor.
"We're going to call her Sky," Araujo said.
Araujo and baby Sky are expected to be released Friday. They will continue their journey to Pennsylvania to see family before they head home to Florida.