Chris and Sarah Purvis, of Sedalia, hold their newborn son, Connor Alan Purvis, Tuesday afternoon at Bothwell Regional Health Center. Connor, who was born at 5:10 p.m. Jan. 3, 2019, was the first baby born in 2019 at BRHC. He weighed 7 pounds, 13 ounces and was 19.75 inches long. The maternal grandparents are Bruce and Sheila Carr, of Busselton West Australia; the paternal grandparents are Rick and Betty Jo Purvis, of Sedalia.

It’s one of the few things that for most people will remain with them throughout their lives: their name. From the family names passed down from generation to generation to creative and sometimes shocking names, unless one chooses to legally change their name later in life, it is something a person is simply born with.

Earlier in January, Bothwell Regional Health Center announced its top baby names of 2019. Five girl names hold the title of most popular, while there is a nine-way tie for the most popular boy name. 

“It's always one of the first things people ask you after the news has been shared about a new pregnancy,” BRHC Women’s Health Nurse Patty Bock said. “‘Do you have a name picked out yet?’ I always think how special it is when parents surprise everyone with the name they have chosen.

“Being a nursery nurse the last 28 years, I have come across some very unique and beautiful names,” Bock continued. “Naming your child, to me, is extremely important as it's something they will have the rest of their life. My personal favorites are the always and forever names and those very unique names that just fit.”

Bock noted a few of the "always and forever names" that are making a comeback are Howard or "Howie," Charlie, Oliver, Jonathon, Rose, Charlotte, Ada, and Opal.

Trendier names, according to Bock, include Easton, Emmett, Cooper, Kinsley, and Isabella or  "Belle.” 

Bock has seen her share of unique names during her tenure at the hospital. They include Thatcher, Meadow, Declan, Chayton, Ledger and Creedence. Even last names that can be used as first names are common including Addison, Bentley, Jameson, Brockman, Parker, Garrison, and Finley. Unisex names are also popular including Charlie, Ashton, Payton, and Adrian.

The most popular girl names at Bothwell in 2019 were Olivia, Ava, Sophia, Anna and Aria. The most popular boy names for the year at BRHC were Levi, Easton, Dylan, Aiden, Andrew, William, Kai, Carter and Charles. Although these names were the most popular, 337 of the 481 babies born at Bothwell in 2019 had unique names that were not duplicated within the hospital. 

“No matter their names, we are grateful to play a vital role in welcoming future generations into this community,” Bothwell CEO Lori Wightman commented in a news release. “Those of us at Bothwell thank the families for allowing our team to be part of their special moments. It is always exciting to hear the new names each year.”

The most popular girls names at Bothwell follow national trends, with top names in the U.S. including Emma, Olivia, Ava, Isabelle and Amelia. The top boy names differ slightly with national trends including Liam, Noah, Logan, James and Oliver.

Education Reporter

Hope Lecchi is the education reporter for the Democrat, covering all things education in Sedalia and Pettis County, as well as providing general assignment and feature coverage. She can be reached at 660-530-0144.

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