Lavinia “Lavi” Mounga was completely unaware of the fact that a baby was coming when she went into labour on a flight from her home in Utah to Honolulu last week. Mounga, during a video interview with Hawaii Pacific Health, said, “I just didn’t know I was pregnant, and then this guy just came out of nowhere”. The baby boy, named Raymond Mounga, came early at just 29 weeks while the mom with her family was traveling to Hawaii for vacation.
A Hawaii Pacific Health family medicine physician, Dr. Dale Glenn, along with three neonatal intensive care unit nurses from North Kansas City Hospital Lani Bamfield, Amanda Beeding, and Mimi Ho were also on the plane and helped the new mother and baby. Mounga said, “Yeah, just overwhelming and just nice that there were three NICU nurses on the plane and a doctor that were able to help stabilize him and make sure that he was OK”.
When deciding on a name, Mounga’s father suggested a name ‘Glenn’ in honor of the doctor who helped her during the flight. But mounga said, “Names are pretty important in our culture (she is Tongan). I didn’t really want to name him ‘Glenn’.”Instead, she asked Dr. Glenn, who gave his adopted children Hawaiian middle names, for a suggestion. He offered “Kaimana,” which is now one of the boy’s middle names.
The child will have to remain in the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit he is full term, about another 10 weeks, Mounga said. She further added thinking about the care she has received in Hawaii, “The aloha spirit is definitely felt here. It’s very different from the mainland. It just feels comforting, and everyone is willing to help.”