The first baby born in the Tri-State in 2013 is more of a blessing than many might be able to imagine.
Colton Andrew Tolliver was born at 4:26 a.m. Jan. 1, weighing 5 pounds 9 ounces, and bringing a nearly undescribable level of joy to his parents, Jessica and Cory Tolliver.
“This was the fourth time,” the baby’s mother said, asking her husband to handle the tough task of explaining their previous hopes and dreams of becoming parents.
“I wouldn’t wish it on nobody. It’s nothing that you want to go through. It kind of spooks you to even try again,” he said, noting the frustration and fear of losing a child and the toll it takes on a deep personal level.
“Not only did we lose them ... but I dug my boys’ graves,” he said, citing the cost of funeral services and the necessity of their circumstances. “I’ve dug several before, but it is hard when it is your own child.”
With baby Colton declared healthy and home from the hospital, both laugh when they discuss their lingering fears.
“We watch him like a hawk,” she said.
“Neither one of us sleeps — let’s put it that way,” he added with a chuckle. “We take turns watching him all the time. We just take shifts.”
The baby arrived four weeks early, they said, insisting on being born even though they were already scheduled to induce labor. “He was coming that day whether the doctor was inducing or not,” she said with a laugh, prompting her husband to explain the pregnancy had been getting complicated for a few weeks before.
Grayson natives, the 23-year-old Tollivers met while attending East Carter High School. “We’ve been together since I was a freshman,” she said, later adding he proposed to her in the middle of a hallway at the school where she graduated in 2008 and he graduated in 2009. “We got married in the middle of his senior year.”
The couple did not have a namesake for their child, although their selection incidentally included a nod to his father’s side of the family.
“I picked his first name and Cory got to pick his second name,” she said.
“I just wanted something to sound good with Colton and later my mom told me that Andrew was my great-grandfather’s name,” he said.
The Tollivers also said they were thrilled to receive a playpen filled with “everything you could need for a baby,” in honor of their son being the first baby born in the new year at King’s Daughter’s Medical Center.
TIM PRESTON can be reached at