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First babies of the New Year born within minutes of each other

Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital Barringtannounced thJasErCurtCrystal Lake welcomed 6-pound 4-ounce daughter Maci Joyce 12:31 a.m. | Courtesy photo

Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington announced that Jason and Erin Curtin of Crystal Lake welcomed a 6-pound, 4-ounce daughter, Maci Joyce, at 12:31 a.m. | Courtesy photo

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Updated: March 3, 2014 3:15PM

For a while there on Wednesday, Jan. 1, it looked like NorthShore Highland Park Hospital would take the honor two years in a row for delivering the first Lake County baby of the new year.

NorthShore spokeswoman Colette Urban announced before dawn that Kane and Laura Abundes of Waukegan had welcomed a 6-pound, 8-ounce son, Lazaro Matias, at 12:33 a.m.

But something of a photo finish was revealed a few hours later when Ro Ostergaard, a spokeswoman for Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington, announced that Jason and Erin Curtin of Crystal Lake welcomed a 6-pound, 4-ounce daughter, Maci Joyce, at 12:31 a.m.

The two-minute photo finish between the two hospitals might have been expected based on recent events: Highland Park delivered 2013’s first baby, a girl at 12:39 a.m., while Good Shepherd delivered the county’s first baby on Jan. 1, 2012, a boy at 1:28 a.m.

Jason Curtin said he wasn’t aware the arrival of his first child would come with any hoopla until someone noticed the clock in the delivery room.

“The nurses really got into it — I think it’s something they really enjoy in their profession, to have that first baby,” the Wheeling native said some 12 hours after the arrival. “I was just in awe of the experience of having our first child, and all of a sudden they were cheering, and I started to realize she was a celebrity.”

Curtin said his wife was due on Dec. 29 but they didn’t have to go to the hospital until the afternoon of Dec. 31.

“We knew she was coming,” he said. “We just weren’t expecting to make a big stink on New Year’s Eve like we did. We’re happy nonetheless to have a healthy baby girl.”

Elsewhere in the county, Vista Medical Center East welcomed its first baby at 7:31 a.m.

Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital had a quiet New Year’s Day with no reported deliveries through mid-afternoon.

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