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Grundy County’s First Baby of 2021 Arrives on January 1

Grundy County’s First Baby of 2021 Arrives on January 1
January 3, 2021 Janet Long

Grundy County’s First Baby of 2021 Arrives on January 1

January 3, 2021, MORRIS, IL – Grundy County’s first baby of the New Year arrived at Morris Hospital on January 1, 2021, at 1:17 p.m. Baby Keenan Lee Hetelle is the son of Hilary Bunting and Michael Hetelle of Morris.

Delivered by Morris Hospital obstetrician/gynecologist Dr. Erik Muraskas, Keenan Lee weighed 7 lbs., 12 oz., and measured 21 inches in length. He was welcomed home by big brothers Kayden, 7, and Kole, 2.

A certified nursing assistant on Morris Hospital’s 2 East medical/surgical unit, Bunting was finishing up a 12 hour night shift on New Year’s Eve when she started to not feel well. When her shift ended at 7 a.m., she decided to go straight to the Family Birthing Suites to get checked out since she was already at the hospital. After being examined, Bunting was informed that she would be staying.

“After everything that everybody went through in 2020, it was exciting to start 2021 with a surprise,” said Bunting, whose due date was January 10. “Keenan’s arrival feels like a little sunshine. His big brother Kayden is beyond excited to have another brother.”

Another unexpected surprise for Bunting was finding out that registered nurse Patti Haage happened to be working on January 1.

“Patti was there for the delivery of my other two boys, so we were over the moon when we learned that she was working,” said Bunting. “She’s an angel walking these hallways. It was definitely special having her for all three of my deliveries.”

Unlike the birth of their first two sons, this was the first time Bunting and Hetelle’s families weren’t able to visit in the hospital due to COVID related visitor restrictions. Instead, members of the immediate family stood outside the window of her hospital room during the New Year’s Day winter storm so they could see baby Keenan for the first time.

“It was a little weird because you’re used to everyone coming in and celebrating with you,” said Bunting. “Instead, we were on the phone talking and seeing each other through the window. This is the first time we’ve felt the COVID effect. It was emotional.”

New Year’s baby Keenan Lee is the grandson of Tammy Bunting of Morris, Renee Hetelle of Morris and the late Gary Lee Hetelle. His great grandparents are Linda and Richard Roberts of Morris and Phillip Young of Marseilles.

As Grundy County’s first baby of 2021, the family received a gift certificate courtesy of the Grundy Chamber of Commerce and a gift bag filled with gifts from the Morris Hospital Auxiliary.


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