When Latrice Burns was delivering her son, Jaquez Davis, she didn’t know what the World Trade Center was. She missed the news reports of terrorists flying planes into it.
What she did know was that her baby was in a breech position.
“All of a sudden out of nowhere, people were rushing into the room to watch the TV,” Latrice said. “I was in so much pain. I was like, ‘I don’t know what’s going on, but take the TV out! Help me get this baby out!’”
Ten years later, Latrice knows a lot more about the world outside Augusta. And, Jaquez still draws the spotlight.
He wants to be a standup comedian when he grows up. Or to own a pizza parlor (it’s his favorite food). He thinks April Fool’s Day would be another great day to be born (he likes fooling people).
When Jaquez tells people his birthday, though, even he’s surprised by the reaction.
“At school, everyone asked each other when their birthdays were. I said mine and all of a sudden there were 20 of them,” he said. “That’s how I knew they were surprised, because everybody had to be there, even the teachers and the assistant principal.”
On Sept. 11, 2001, Latrice was pregnant with her first child. Doctors had guessed her due date would be Sept. 7, then the 12th or the 14th. Her water broke at 11 a.m. but the contractions weren’t close enough when she got to Medical College of Georgia Hospital, and there wasn’t enough dilation. Her baby’s head was sideways and her doctor was trying to get him turned around.
When everyone stopped to watch TV, Latrice started raising sand.
“So, my doctor said, ‘Ms. Burns, there has been a tragedy, but I don’t want to bother you with that. We’re trying to avoid having a C-section,’” Latrice said.
Eight hours later, doctors gave up. Latrice had a C-section and was resting.
Her mother told her of the attacks, but it took two weeks of news reports for the events to sink in. In the years that followed, Latrice wanted to learn more.
“I had a lot of questions about what was going on, and why would somebody do that. It brought me to watch the news more,” Latrice said. “Back then a lot of that stuff didn’t faze me, I didn’t pay attention to it. I didn’t vote. But after that, it caused me to have a lot of opinions.”
Latrice believes being born on Sept. 11 is a distinction Jaquez won’t escape.
“It’s going to follow him, because it’s something no one is going to ever forget,” Latrice said. “Anytime he has to give his birth date, they’ll say, ‘You’re a 9/11 baby.’ But, that’s OK. He’ll be OK with it.”