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Welch family welcomes baby boy

Orchestra director Jon Welch returns to work after the birth of his child on the first day of school.

The first day of school is usually busy enough, but for Jon Welch, the orchestra director at West High, it was even busier. He had to rush out of school to get to the hospital because his wife was about to give birth.

Everett Taylor Welch was born healthy on Aug. 23. The next day he had to be transferred to the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital because the doctors feared there was something wrong with his intestines.

There were two things the doctors were worried about: blockage in Everett’s intestinal tract and malrotation.

It’s just really cool the way the community just kind of wraps their arms around you in a way and just lets you go and enjoy this wonderful life changing event”

— Jon Welch

Malrotation is a twisting of the intestines that happens in utero when the intestines are being formed.

“[The doctors] were concerned about surgery, and they weren’t equipped in any of the hospitals up in Cedar Rapids to evaluate that. We had to be sent down to see a team of specialists here at the University of Iowa,” Welch said. “I left the very next morning in the transport, in the ambulance with just my son and myself, while my wife stayed back in Cedar Rapids.”

In the end, Everett didn’t end up having malrotation. In fact, the doctors didn’t find anything wrong in any of the tests they performed.

“It just took a few days for them to exhaust every single possibility of what might have gone wrong….they were able to rule pretty much everything out and he was given a clean bill of health,” Welch explained.

Everett was released from the hospital on Aug. 27 and Welch returned to school on Sept. 4.

“It’s fun coming back to work, and just seeing how all the kids are reacting….they’re just really stepping up and doing their part and being very kind to me as I’m going through this change….it’s just really cool the way the community just kind of wraps their arms around you in a way and just lets you go and enjoy this wonderful life changing event,” Welch said.

Having missed six days of school, Welch had quite a bit of work to catch up on; however, he wasn’t too worried. He had been prepared knowing the due date was Aug. 26, and the orchestra helped out however they could.

Mr. Welch’s newborn, Everett Welch. Photo courtesy of Mr. Welch.

“[The orchestra has] put a lot of hard work in. And we’ve really raised the bar on ourselves over the past couple of years. And what’s fun is when you realize as a teacher that everything seems to be working,” Welch explained.

Ruth Miller ‘19, a member of the orchestra, felt Welch’s absence.

“The first week of school was pretty crazy without Mr. Welch. Normally we get started on the orchestra pieces right away so there was definitely some tension without him there….orchestra didn’t really feel normal until Mr. Welch came back,” Miller said.

Welch is grateful that the orchestras have been extra helpful getting everything ready for the school year.

I think for many people in the orchestra we view Mr. Welch as a parent/dad, so now that he is actually a father it makes everyone really happy.”

— Ruth Miller '19

“We’ve got a really strong team here, and we have strong leadership ….[it] makes me realize how great everybody is and how great it can be when everybody is coming together and working around that concept of a team,” Welch said.

Not only was the orchestra helpful, they were also elated to hear that Everett was born.

“Everyone was really excited and happy that Everett was born,” Miller said. “We had been expecting him since spring so to hear that he was okay was a huge relief to us. I think for many people in the orchestra we view Mr. Welch as a parent/dad, so now that he is actually a father it makes everyone really happy.”

As a new father, Welch was unsure of what parenting was going to be like, but he loves it.

“There’s really no thrill like holding your child for the first time and looking at them, and just seeing how full of life and energy they are. And just feeling that capacity for love that you didn’t know that you had,” Welch said.

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About the Writer
Bess Frerichs, Reporter
Bess Frerichs is a Sophomore and she is starting her first year on staff as a reporter. Outside of West Side Story, she enjoys reading and playing the harp.
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Welch family welcomes baby boy