Meet the DC Area's First Baby of 2019

While others welcomed the new year with champagne toasts and fireworks displays, a Maryland family rushed to the hospital for the birth of their New Year's Day baby.

Born just 34 seconds after midnight on Jan. 1, Meilani Morales is believed to be the first baby born in 2019 in the D.C. area.

"She's a blessing — my new year's gift," mother Julie Palencia said.

Little Meilani was born at Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center in Rockville, and weighed 5 pounds and 15 ounces. She joins a 1-year-old sister.

The baby was due Jan. 13, but, "She was in a rush to come, for some reason," her mother said. 

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