The first Vineyard baby of 2019 entered the world in dramatic fashion early Wednesday morning, in the back of a Tri-Town ambulance.

Seniel Hannagan began having contractions on New Year’s Day while her family celebrated the holiday with lunch and a trip to the beach. She said the contractions became more intense throughout the day and she went to the hospital early that evening but was sent home when the contractions didn’t increase.

Mrs. Hannagan said that just after 1 a.m. the contractions became so intense that she woke up her husband Andy Hannagan. The couple called 911.

Tri-Town Ambulance quickly arrived, including the Hannagan’s neighbor and Tri-Town chief Ben Retmier. The ambulance raced toward the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital with Mr. Hannagan following close behind. Just before reaching the drawbridge around 2:30 a.m., the baby was born with the umbilical cord wrapped twice around his neck. Mr. Retmier and EMT Jason Blandini, both paramedics, reacted with poise and cut the cord, marking the first time either of them had assisted in delivering a baby.

Solstice Hannagan was born on Jan. 2, weighing 6 pounds, 15 ounces. — Maria Thibodeau

“We thought we may have a little more time, but when she said it was coming we were like we got this, let’s do this,” Mr. Retmier told the Gazette on Wednesday.

When the ambulance arrived at the hospital, Mr. Hannagan leaped out of his car and waited anxiously for his wife to emerge. He didn’t have to wait long.

“I heard her yell, we have the baby!” he said.

The baby, Solstice Hannagan, was born two days before his due date and weighed 6 pounds, 15 ounces.

Solstice and his parents, along with his two-year-old older brother Astrolis, were resting comfortably at the hospital Wednesday afternoon. Mrs. Hannagan said she decided on the name Solstice because she liked the sound of it, and how it paired with the name Astrolis.

“Astrolis of the stars, Solstice of the sun,” she said.

Though it was a stressful experience, Mrs. Hannagan said giving birth to the first child of the new year was a special honor. “I think it’s awesome,” she said. “I feel like I won.”

She and Mr. Hannagan offered high praise for the EMTs, West Tisbury police and the hospital for their assistance under less than ideal circumstances. She said the couple’s midwife, Nancy Leport, came to help even though she wasn’t on call.

“It was just chaos but everyone handled it so well,” Mrs. Hannagan said.

Mr. Retmier said he couldn’t be prouder of how his team responded, including EMTs Bruce Haynes and Diane Demoe, and West Tisbury police officer Nikolaj Wojtkielo.

“It was stressful to say the least,” Mr. Retmier said. “I wasn’t on duty, but she’s my neighbor. It was scary, but it worked out for the best and the baby is happy and healthy.”

As Mrs. Hannagan cradled Solstice in her arms, she said she couldn’t imagine a more exciting beginning to 2019 than with a newborn.

“It’s a good way to start the new year,” she said.