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Muddy Misery
Resources are pooled into a landslide-devastated county in China's northwest to lift it out of disaster
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UPDATED: August 16, 2010
New Baby Born after Zhouqu Mudslides


Amid the stories of death and destruction in Zhouqu, there is story of both joy and sorrow. After being pushed to safety by her husband as the couple made a desperate dash to flee the mudslide, a woman has now given birth to a healthy child.

Four days after disaster struck Yang Laoji gave birth to a son.

On the morning of August 8th, Yang Laoji and her husband tried to flee their home only to find the escape route was blocked. With only room for one person to get through, Laoji's husband pushed her ahead.

Yang Laoji's brother said, "Her husband pushed her towards the doorway, but he was then swept away by the floods. Even at that time, he was shouting "Don't be afraid" until the sound of his voice disappeared."

Neighbors found Yang Laoji and asked for help from the local Public Security unit across the road.

Duo Lei, Public Security Unit of Zhouqu County, Gansu Province, said, "Somebody told me that there is a pregnant women inside this building, and asked us to save her life. I broke the glass and entered. She was shivering, with mud all over her body. I urged her to try to climb over the barriers, and asked somebody else to meet her. But she couldn't move because she was pregnant."

Yang Laoji tried to follow the instructions of rescuers, but failed many times. Once they broke another window they were able to help her out.

The pregnant woman was put on a simple stretcher and a team made up of police and her neighbors carried her through the mud.

At the hospital, Yang Laoji was found to be suffering slight abrasions to her body. A check up showed her unborn child was not harmed.

Ren Xiaohua, Head Nurse of Zhouqu People's Hospital, said, "We found the baby was in good condition by monitoring its heart rate. But the pregnant woman was in shock. She refused to say a single word, and was just crying."

Laoji eventually gave birth to a healthy baby. But though she is now calm, she still is not talking much. Her family says the birth of her child brings new hope.

(CNTV.cn August 15, 2010)

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