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HPHA Welcomes First Baby of 2017!

Source: Stratford Beacon Herald


January 3, 2017

The first baby delivered at Stratford General Hospital in 2017 has a name befitting that distinction.

Maximus Princeton Dougherty was born at 7:07 a.m. on January 1, weighing in at a healthy 8 pounds, 7 ounces.

He's the first child for Shawn and Paige Dougherty, who just moved to Stratford from Toronto in early December.

“I love history, so it starts from there,” Shawn, 37, said of the choice of names. “The ancient Roman generals and the popes afterwards. It's kind of fitting that he's born January 1. He leads the way.”

It's “a powerful name,” agreed Paige, 25.

“We kind of had the name Princeton picked out since we met, and then heard the name Max and fell in love with it,” she said. “He looks like a Max.”

Both mom and dad grew up in Timmins, but even though their families knew one another they didn't meet until five years ago. They've been married for three years and had been living in Toronto, where Shawn works at Pearson International Airport.

Paige had lived in Stratford after her mother moved here a dozen years ago to remarry. Bridget and Fritz Steigmeier still live in the city.

“Family, way of life, and opportunity,” Shawn said of the reasons for the move to Stratford.

After a few months of paternity leave he plans to return to work but within a year will be looking at going back to school to study nursing.

“He was very into the whole process – almost annoyingly,” said Paige. “He was so excited, asking what's going on?”

“It's fascinating,” Shawn said in his defence.

Max took his time coming. He was due on Christmas Day, then decided that the right moment was just as the couple was about to sit down to a New Year's Eve dinner that Shawn had prepared.

“I really thought he was going to be earlier,” said Paige. “It was frustrating but what else can you do but wait? I don't remember all of that stress. I just remember the stress from yesterday and today.

“It was a great pregnancy. Labour was hard, but he's perfect.”

And the couple agreed that being born on January 1 has plenty of upside, from school to sports.

“And it will always be a party on his birthday,” Paige said.