ANTIGUA – Mother dies giving birth
ST JOHNS – Thirty nine year-old Jeanine Elmes died after giving birth to her eleventh child. Jeanine’s second son tattooed his mother’s name on his neck in remembrance of her life
Mourning relatives are calling for answers from the authorities about what caused a mother of 11 to die during childbirth, mid-night on Monday.
Elmes, who was an employee of Heritage Hotel, died at the Mount St John’s Medical Centre shortly after giving birth to a “healthy” baby girl.
When Obersver media visited Carel Martin at her Parham resident, the mother of the deceased was preparing a meal for her devastated grandchildren.
Martin said she did not know the cause of her eldest daughter’s death because no doctors had contacted her.
“Nobody told me what she died from; I only got a call from my nurse sister saying that they called her and told her that she is not breathing,” Martin said.
“That was about 11pm and then she died about a quarter to midnight. No doctors have called me,” she added.
Martin said she was still shocked about the phone call and was unaware of anything that could have happened because her daughter had no ailments to her knowledge.
“I was shocked when my sister called me on the phone to tell me that my daughter isn’t breathing, because I know I spoke to my daughter minutes to three the same day and she was by me the Sunday,” Martin said.
“All they said is that she told them she was feeling hot and they gave her a fan, and she said she needed some water and they gave her that also and that’s all,” the mother recalled.
The grandmother said her daughter’s children will be staying with her. When the question was raised about how she plans to take care of all of them, she said that she has a job.
“I am working person; I work, my other daughter works and my boyfriend works, so they must eat.”
“Whatever I eat, they eat, if I suck a little salt they will suck salt with me because I’m not going to give them to nobody,” she added.
Elmes’ oldest son is 22 years old and she also has a 21-year-old son, and an 18-year-old daughter. The majority of her children are under the age of ten.
Martin said the father of the newborn visits the hospital to ensure that the child is ok and was at the hospital the night her daughter died.
“Now and again the children will cry, but they know that their mother died and won’t be back. I let them know that they will no longer see her,” said the mother of the deceased.
The mother of the deceased said that she and her daughter were very close.
“Jeanine was a good mother, she loved her children very much and she would kill for them,” she said.
Martin said she was not happy with the way the hospital dealt with her daughter’s death and strongly believes that they could have done more to save her life.
Acting CEO of the Mount St John’s Medical Centre, Gary Thomas declined comment but instead forwarded us to Salma Crump the hospital’s communications manager.