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Twenty-month-old Barrett prepares to plant flowers with his mother, Amanda (Norgaard) McBride, while Joseph Phillips holds Barrett's baby brother, 1-week-old Joseph Dominick Phillips. The newborn was born May 19 while McBride drove her 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt, pictured in back. Not pictured in the oldest boy, 6-year-old Aaron, who is in school during the day. Pioneer Photo/Monte Draper

Bagley parents of baby born in car now dealing with media limelight

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Bagley parents of baby born in car now dealing with media limelight
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

When the phone rang Wednesday morning, Amanda (Norgaard) McBride all but groaned.

"Now who's calling?" she wondered.

McBride has given countless media interviews in the past week, recounting the birth of her third son, 1-week-old Joseph Dominick Phillips.


Joseph was born at 12:20 a.m. May 19 in a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt that was going about 70 mph from Bagley to North Country Regional Hospital in Bemidji. His mother was driving the vehicle since his father, Joseph Phillips, is unable to drive due to seizures. McBride had Phillips steer the vehicle while she delivered the newborn and then turned on the heat and kept the baby warm until Phillips steered them to the emergency room.

The first story on Joseph's birth ran in Sunday's Pioneer. Newspapers and media outlets across the country then began picking up the story.

So when Phillips' phone rang, again, Wednesday morning, Amanda expected yet another interview request.

Instead, it was General Motors.

GM, the makers of Chevrolet, was calling to offer its congratulations - and gifts.

GM is providing the "newest member of the Chevy family" with a year's supply of diapers, two child safety seats, a stroller and other supplies, such as bottles and toys.

"We knew the Cobalt was designed to deliver its occupants safely, but never did we expect a delivery quite like this," Margaret Brooks, Chevrolet product marketing director for small cars and crossovers said in a news release. "From everyone at Chevrolet, we'd like to congratulate Amanda and Joseph on the newest addition to their family.

"Unfortunately, there is no section in the Cobalt driver's manual on how to change a diaper but we're sure they'll do just fine."

The delivery will be made next week. The family, which includes McBride's 6-year-old and 20-month-old sons, will be moving into a log cabin this weekend in Ebro.

"Right now we wouldn't want the extra stuff around," McBride said.

But, she added, she certainly appreciates the gesture. The couple bought a pack of newborn diapers two or three days ago, and Joseph has already gone through all of them.

Media sensation

When asked how many interviews the couple has given in the past week, the sleep-deprived parents looked at one another and tried to count them up.

There were four or five radio interviews, McBride said.

And two news stations, Phillips added.

There were two newspapers and a request from "Good Morning America," McBride concluded.

And the calls are still coming in.

"We've totaled more than 200 minutes on our (cell phones) in three days," McBride said.

They've heard from friends and relatives who saw their story in states such as North Carolina and Washington. And in cities as far as Las Vegas and London.


Joseph was born at 12:20 a.m. with a full head of dark hair. He weighed 8 pounds and was 18.5 inches long.

Just one day after his birth, he had his eyes open and seemed to be looking around the hospital room.

He eats well, McBride said, but he has become an early riser.

"He has learned what time 3 o'clock in the morning is," she said, laughing. "He wakes up then and just looks around."

While McBride, who is breast-feeding, is seeing to Joseph's dietary needs, his father has diaper duty.

"She takes one end and I take care of the other end," Phillips joked.

Amanda believes little Joseph already is smiling and said he is a really good baby. He even puts up with bath time.

"He doesn't mind much of anything at all," Phillips said.

But then Joseph, who had been sleeping in his father's arms, woke up and squinted at the sun before letting out a little cry.

"Well, except the sun, because it's bright," Phillips amended.

Bethany Wesley
(218) 333-9200 x337