Irish Miracle Baby
By Julia Brodsky, Editorial Assistant
February / March 2016
Zoe Ireland Drake, the American baby girl born just minutes after landing in Dublin on October 28th, 2015, spent Christmas in Ireland. Her parents, Jenny and Gavin Drake, have remained in Dublin ever since their Nashville-bound American Airlines flight redirected to Dublin when Jenny went into premature labor at 25 weeks.
Jenny and Gavin were heading home after enjoying a “babymoon” in Paris when Jenny began to experience pains. She quickly alerted a flight attendant, and shortly thereafter, the plane redirected to Dublin.
Jenny considers herself lucky that there happened to be seven or eight doctors on board, but she knew that at 25 weeks, her daughter’s chances would have been extremely slim if she hadn’t made it to the hospital.
“My big fear was that if she was born on the plane she wouldn’t make it because she was so young and her lungs were not properly developed,” she said. Only four minutes after arriving at Dublin’s Rotunda Hospital, Zoe was born, weighing just 1.8 pounds. Since then, she has been developing steadily.
The couple had initially planned on naming their daughter Elizabeth, but realized they needed to pay homage to the country of her birth. “She had to now be Ireland,” they told the Irish Independent.
The Drakes have spent the months since their daughter’s birth in Ireland, and the couple’s three-year-old son, Aidan, who had been staying with his grandparents, joined them in Dublin for Christmas. ♦