BATON ROUGE, La. – The wife of a slain Baton Rouge police officer gave birth to his son. While all childbirths are special, some seem to have a heavenly trumpet welcoming the newborn into the world based upon the road traveled from conception to delivery. That was surely the case yesterday.
Birth With Pomp and Circumstance
Heaven simply appeared closer with the birth of fallen officer Matthew Gerald’s brand new baby boy, reported WAFB.
He was born Tuesday, March 21 and was already grabbing onto a piece of his daddy. It’s a father he will never get a chance to meet after the ambush on police officers and sheriff’s deputies in July of 2016.
Matthew Gerald’s wife, Dechia, invited WAFB’s Kiran Chawla to her hospital room, so we could all enjoy this special bundle of joy. What an honor! There was a room full of people to take in the ten fingers and ten toes, but a little bracelet on a little wrist says it all, and if it doesn’t, an onesie should.
“’Baby Buttons, that’s no choice. I don’t have a choice in that matter,” said Dechia. “BRPD pretty much already said that, so yes, ‘Baby Buttons’ it is.”
Slain Baton Rouge Police Officer
Officer Matthew Gerald of the Baton Rouge Police Department died in the line of duty on July 17, 2016. He was one of three officers executed by a gunman looking to take out cops. Three additional officers were critically wounded.
Introducing Baby Buttons
Yet it was after Gerald’s death that his wife, Dechia, realized her late husband had left her something special to remember him by. She conceived just five days before he died. His brothers in blue called Gerald “Buttons,” so now his little boy will carry on the name “Baby Buttons.”
Falyn Matthew Gerald was born at 4:31 p.m. He weighs 6 lbs., 8 ounces and is 19.5 inches long. So while childbirth still seems like a miracle, the arrival of this baby boy came with extra fanfare Tuesday.
And it only seems fitting!
Dechia has worn her husband’s wedding ring as a necklace ever since the attack last summer. When she held “Baby Buttons” for the first time, he held tight to that ring.
“It was very overwhelming… very emotional. Every emotion you could imagine comes at one time, all at once, but it’s very exciting,” Dechia added.
It’s exciting because little Falyn will be a constant reminder of her husband, but challenging knowing he is not physically here. Yet Gerald’s presence was felt even in the hospital room.
“I can just feel his presence. I don’t have to worry about the anxiety or worry where’s he’s at or what he’s doing because at this moment, he’s here with us,” Dechia explained.
“We all feel daddy with us,” said Tish, Matthew’s mother. “Very bittersweet, just more than I can express. Just touches my heart more than I can express. It’s like having him all over again.”
(Feature image WAFB newscast screenshot)