“She’s gaining weight and smiling a lot. She’s an easy baby who loves to be held and sung to…” If it weren’t for the three sisters who heard her cry, this baby’s story might have been different.
She may have been abandoned by her own family, but it led to more than a 1000 people from across the world who wanted to open their doors and their hearts to the baby girl and make her a part of their family.
The little girl, unofficially named Baby India, was found wrapped in a plastic bag in the middle of a wooded area in Forsyth County, Georgia just about an hour after she was given birth to. In the woods at around the same time were three teenage sisters who heard a strange cry, which they thought was an animal at first. “(We) grabbed our flashlights and we’re driving around and we’re, like, ‘That doesn’t sound like an animal,’” said Kayla Ragatz, one of the three sisters.
They rushed back home and told their father, Alan Ragatz, that they heard a baby cry, but even he found it hard to believe. “I said, ‘That’s got to be impossible. It’s a baby raccoon, deer or something,’” he told WSB-TV. As they followed the sound, they were taken to a spot that was piled with leaves and sticks and had a bath mat. Kayla said, “As we got closer, we realized it was a baby crying.”
“We went down, pulled it up. There was a poor little baby wrapped in a plastic bag, and we called 911,” Alan said. “She was alive. She was crying, so we figured that was a good sign. Could have been worse. The credit goes to my girls. They were the ones sticking with it.”
The sisters believe that it was an “act of God” that brought them to the right place at the right time. “It was terrifying, scary,” Kayla said. “Panic was going through all our minds. We were all crying.”
As the police arrived and ripped the plastic bag open, the officer couldn’t help but apologize to the precious baby for heartlessly being abandoned in the middle of the woods when ideally, she should be wrapped somewhere in a warm blanket in her parents’ arms.
They found the little baby covered in blood with her umbilical cord still attached. One officer, Deputy Terry Roper can be seen in the video apologizing to the baby as he got her out of the plastic bag. “Look at you sweetheart. I’m so sorry,” he can be heard saying. When he was later asked about it, he said, “At first, I think it was because I opened the bag up in the baby’s face. But then– I was just apologizing for the situation. I was sorry she had been dumped and abandoned.”
The tiny baby even wrapped her little arm around one of the officer’s finger, and it hurt everyone there to think that someone would be capable of doing this to a baby, especially since some of the people present at the sight were parents themselves.
The baby was rushed to the hospital and has been in great shape since. Sheriff Ron Freeman said, “It is, without doubt, divine intervention that this child was found. If it wasn’t for these citizens, we would be having a different conversation.”
The police later said, “We are happy to report that Baby India is thriving and is in the care of the Georgia Department of Family and Children Services,” as reported by People.
“I could tell she just needed love from that point forward,” said Deputy Terry Roper told FOX 5. Now, hundreds of people are ready to give her love as well as give her a home. Baby India has received an outpour of love and about 1,000 people across the world offer to adopt her. She was kept in the care of the county’s Division of Family and Children Services and investigations were underway to find out who left Baby India in such a miserable situation.
“It’s amazing the number of people who are looking to take on a new life into their families,” Sheriff Freeman said, “and we got somebody who tried to throw one away.”
She’s now in a “wonderful protective home right now,” said Tom Rawlings, director of the state Division of Family and Children Services, according to KTLA. “She’s gaining weight and smiling a lot. She’s an easy baby who loves to be held and sung to, and she’s overall thriving now.”
People are holding on to the hope that she won’t carry the effect of the incident as she grows up, especially since she was soo little when it happened. “At this young age, children are very resilient,” Rawlings said. Baby India still has hope at a normal, happy life and can grow up with people ready to shower her with love. “Even a person born into a situation of tragedy can have a long and fulfilling life, and that’s what we hope for this child,” he added.
However, there are other babies who were abandoned just like Baby India but were found too late. Officials are trying to let people know that abandoning the baby isn’t the only option left for parents who can’t raise their babies, either because of the finances or because they can’t provide a safe environment for the baby to grow up in.
“Too often, babies are abandoned in terrible conditions like this. We’ve had babies left in bathrooms and other horrible situations,” Rawlings said and mentioned how Baby India’s story is nothing short of a miracle. They are hoping that people won’t abandon their baby and will have the heart to consider other options and let their baby find their way to a safe and loving home.
Watch more below: