As the new year began Wednesday, Jan. 1, when the clock struck midnight, we said goodbye to 2019 and welcomed the start of 2020. 

For two tiny babies, Jan. 1 was not only the beginning of a new year, but the beginning of a new life.

The two babies were the firstborns for 2020 at the two hospitals serving DeSoto County, Baptist Memorial Hospital-DeSoto in Southaven and Methodist Olive Branch Hospital.

Methodist Olive Branch is able to boast the first baby born in DeSoto County for the new year, and the new decade, with the Wednesday morning birth of tiny DeAngelo Jackson Jr.. DeAngelo was born at 7:56 a.m. Jan. 1, and weighed seven pounds, six ounces. The baby, new son of Briana Cork of Southaven, was 19 inches long.

Baptist-DeSoto and Audra Mitchell followed later that afternoon, when Amyr Liam Rice came into the world at about 1:25 p.m. The six-pound, three-ounce boy was born about 1:25 p.m. New Year's Day. Benjamin Rice is the father of the new addition to the family.  

“It was a moment of excitement and a lot of joy and blessing,” Mitchell said about her first look at her new son.

Amyr has one older brother, who is 19 months old, Mitchell said.

Both babies start their new lives with a bounty of gifts provided them by the respective hospitals. At Methodist Olive Branch, DeAngelo and his mother received a “Welcome to 2020” gift wagon that included outfits, diapers, blankets and the necessities that a newborn would need.

For Amyr and his mother from Baptist-DeSoto, the gifts included a baby car seat, birth cloth, a Pampers goodie bag, diapers, wipes, a baby healthcare kit, silver spoon, a blanket crocheted by hospital volunteers, and other items.

Bob Bakken is Managing Editor of the DeSoto Times-Tribune.