Local couple starts new year with new baby

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — It’s a new year and a new beginning for one West Michigan family.

The Iveys began 2020 with the gift of life just after midnight.

“Daddy’s so happy,” Brian Ivey said. “I want to cry.”

Ivey reflected on his new baby girl Kendra as his fiancee Natisha Thompson cradled her.

“Just a bundle of joy, precious,” Ivey said.

He said Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital doctors confirmed Kendra was the first baby born in Grand Rapids in 2020. She came into the world at 12:19 a.m. New Year’s Day, weighing 7 pounds and 4 ounces.

When she’s a little older, Ivey plans to involve her in sports.

“Get her into some football,” Ivey said. “Her mama don’t like it, but I’m gonna get her in it.”

Until that time comes, Kendra’s mom is focused on passing down the same words of encouragement her mom passed on to her.

“Whatever you do, give it everything you got,” Thompson said.

Kendra’s parents intend to take that advice when raising her.

“Very much so,” Ivey said. “It’s a blessing.”

Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo said it saw its first birth of 2020 at 1:39 a.m., a baby girl. A boy was born at Bronson Battle Creek Hospital at 4:42 a.m. Lansing’s first baby of 2020 is believed to be Birdee Lee Clark, born just after 3 a.m.