22 years later, ambulance baby blossoms

14 Jul, 2021 | Tom Kranz |

22 years later, ambulance baby blossoms

Lisa Kline trio

Among the treasured moments for Fanwood Rescue Squad members is the privilege of assisting with the birth of a baby. In 1998 there were two ambulance births within two months. Born in July was Haley Knudsen, whose family moved away some years later. Then in September, Lisa Kline couldn’t wait for parents Sue and Stuart Kline to get to the hospital.

Over the years, the Klines, who still live in Fanwood, have kept in touch with the squad. And during the July 4th fireworks in Scotch Plains this year, Mrs. Kline showed Captain Ian Lewis a photo of Lisa today, 22 years later, on her graduation from Rutgers University where she graduated this spring with a Bachelor’s degree in accounting.

The story of Lisa’s birth is one mom won’t ever forget. Strong contractions had caught Mrs. Kline home alone on September 15th, 1998 and forced her to call 911.

“I actually had to crawl to the phone and then all I could say was, ‘I’m having a baby!” she later told the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Times.

It was about 11 AM when squad members Bob Kruthers, Steve Siegal, Ruth Wegmann and Bill Crosby arrived. Stuart Kline, a Borough Councilman at the time, returned home just in time to see his wife being loaded into the ambulance. But there wasn’t even time for the rig to pull away from the home. With two pushes, Lisa Kline was born in the parked ambulance.

“It was just amazing,” said Mr. Kline of his daughter’s birth at the time.

“We’ve helped with several other childbirths over the years,” remarked Capt. Lewis. “It’s one of those moments you might never see in an entire EMS career. But when you do, it’s unforgettable. We wish Lisa all the best and a bright future as a college graduate.”

Lisa is already working as a senior accountant at Prevention Links in Roselle.