Both new parents were wiping tears from their eyes, enjoying the moment, as hospital staff moved back and forth, performing various tests, placing identification wristbands, and making sure mother and baby were comfortable.
"Because of the short notice, he couldn't come home," Katy Gibbs said of her husband, adding that they also need the money earned from his military service. When he comes home in April, he'll work on finishing his schoolwork but "needs to find a job," she said. "He wants to be a firefighter."
Neighbors, family and friends have been helping where they can, bringing gifts and providing support.
Carol Hutchinson, Katy Gibbs' mother, said her daughter put on a brave face Tuesday and throughout the seemingly long deployment.
"When Dad's not here, you can try to help, but you can't possibly do everything he can do," Hutchinson, of Salem, said. "I couldn't help but think how much he wanted to reach out and touch (his son) and her."
The new father has nearly completed three years of his enlisted six in active duty. While the future is uncertain, the Gibbses are excited to be back together again.
"I can only imagine (holding him for the first time) will be like the day I got to call Aiden my own son," he said. He's keeping his fingers crossed that his current station will end as scheduled, if not earlier.
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