'Stormy' makes her debut waiting for tornadoes
by Gary Hanner
Jun 25, 2011 | 2350 views |  1 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Tracy Sipes holds her little baby, Madison Nicole Sipes. Madison was born April 27, the day tornadoes made their way through St. Clair County. Her nickname is Stormy.
Tracy Sipes holds her little baby, Madison Nicole Sipes. Madison was born April 27, the day tornadoes made their way through St. Clair County. Her nickname is Stormy.
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PELL CITY — April 27, 2011, was a day tornadoes swept across Alabama, leaving many dead, hundreds injured and thousands homeless. But for one Pell City couple, it’s a day they will always remember — not just because of the bad weather, but because their baby girl was born.

Madison Nicole Sipes was born that day at 12:22 p.m. at Brookwood Hospital. She is being called a miracle baby by her parents, Josh and Tracy Sipes.

Tracy, who is originally from Moody, and her husband, struggled getting to the Birmingham hospital that morning. They live behind Pell City High School.

“When the storm hit that morning, we lost power and trees were blocking the road,” Tracy Sipes said.

“The neighbors across the street and down the road used chainsaws to cut power poles and trees in half to clear the road in order for them to get to the hospital,” said Mike Fine of Leeds, Tracy’s father.

When Tracy was ready to deliver, the power was off at the hospital.

“They had to use generators to do my C-section,” Sipes said. “I will never forget the day she was born and never forget what happened as well with all the bad weather. When the second set of storms arrived, they moved us all out into the hallway. I was in a hospital bed holding my baby waiting on the tornadoes to hit.”

Madison was not due until May 3. Even though she was born two weeks early, she arrived at 8 pounds, 3 ounces, and was a tad more than 20 inches long.

Because she was born on the day the tornadoes struck Alabama, some family members wanted her to have a different name.

“My mother wanted us to name her Stormy,” Sipes said. “I would change her name, but my husband does not like Stormy. He calls her Madison, but I call her Stormy. I call her that because she is a handful. There is a reason she was born that day.”

Teresa Fine, Tracy’s mother, said her little grandbaby would always be Stormy to her.

“She is always going to be my little tornado,” Mrs. Fine said.

Contact Gary Hanner at ghanner@thestclairtimes.com.

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