Ada church group finds baby on freeway - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Ada church group finds baby on freeway

Posted: Updated:
This one-month-old baby boy was found abandoned along an Oklahoma City freeway. (Courtesy) This one-month-old baby boy was found abandoned along an Oklahoma City freeway. (Courtesy)
An Ada church group found a baby abandoned on the side of Interstate 40 in Oklahoma City. (KFOR) An Ada church group found a baby abandoned on the side of Interstate 40 in Oklahoma City. (KFOR)
The Abba's House youth group was in this van when they spotted the abandoned infant on Saturday. (KTEN) The Abba's House youth group was in this van when they spotted the abandoned infant on Saturday. (KTEN)

ADA, Okla. -- A Texoma pastor is speaking out after a group of young parishioners found a baby on the side of a freeway in Oklahoma City.

The youth group from Abba's House Worship Center was on their way home to Ada from a field trip to Frontier City on Saturday. Youth pastor Roger Prader was driving, his wife was in the passenger seat, and there were twelve kids in the back of the van.

"Something caught the corner of my eye when I was driving, and there's a baby on the side of 40 here in a carrier," Prader told a 911 dispatcher. 

The group didn't believe what they were seeing at first.

"And they saw a child seat over on the side over on the shoulder of the road that looked like it had a doll in it," Oklahoma City police spokesman MSgt. Gary Knight said. 

But it wasn't a doll. It was a living, breathing one-month-old baby boy.

"When he walked up around, the baby was not moving. And so when he moved the lid, that's when the baby opened his eyes," Abba's House Pastor Kenneth Angel said. Prader's wife immediately picked up the infant while the youth pastor called police.

The infant had been abandoned with $5,500 in cash, a birth certificate, and a Social Security card.

"I think that church van was in the right place at the right time," said Alexis Harrison, who also stopped to help. "They were the first ones who got to the baby... it's just surreal."

Pastor Angel said their prayers are with the child and his parents.

"I don't know what drives people, you know, to do the things they do," he said. "We just believe that God has a greater purpose in all of this, and that He used us to find the baby."

Police said they located the infant's mother, but her name has not been released.

"It's unclear exactly what led to her just pulling over and setting the child on the side of the road and then driving off," Knight said.

Police said the baby is now in state custody. He was not hurt, and is expected to be just fine.

Oklahoma has a safe haven law that permits a parent to voluntarily relinquish a child seven days old or younger to a medical services provider or child rescuer without penalty. In this case, the child was too old to qualify and the parent did not surrender the child to an appropriate individual or agency.

  • Submit a News Tip

    Do you have a news tip for KTEN?

    Begin by entering your email address in the field below or call 903-548-4010

    * denotes required fields
    We're sorry, but only one entry is allowed per person.
    Thank you for your continued interest.

    Your news tip has been submitted. If you provided contact information, we might use it to reach out to you if additional information is required.