Share this article

print logo

First baby born in 2019, and the top baby names in Buffalo for 2018

Chris and Kristina Wienckowski's daughter was the first Buffalo-area baby to enter the world in 2019.

Charlotte Reese Wienckowski was born at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday at John R. Oishei Children's Hospital. She was followed by a baby boy born at Mercy Hospital at 12:54 a.m.

The Wienckowskis' fourth daughter, who wasn't expected until Jan. 9, was actually born about 30 seconds after midnight, "pretty much right after the Ball Drop," said Chris, the baby's father.

Kristina Wienckowski said the name turned out to be an easy choice.

"I saw the name Charlotte online one day, and fell in love with it," she said.

She isn't alone: Charlotte was the fourth most popular name among girls born in Kaleida Health hospitals in 2018, and the fifth most popular when including hospitals administered by the Catholic Health System.

Kaleida's top five girl names, in order, were Olivia, Ava, Emma, Charlotte and Evelyn. The top five boys names were Benjamin, Liam, Logan, Michael and Alexander.

At Catholic Health hospitals, the top five girl names were Emma, Evelyn, Charlotte, Grace and Nora. The boys were Lucas, Jack, Logan, Benjamin, and Liam.

Between the two hospital systems, Olivia, Emma, Ava, Evelyn and Charlotte topped the list for girl's names, and, for boys, it was Benjamin, Liam, Logan, Lucas and Jackson.

"Henry" was the name chosen by Jennifer and Joseph Menter of Grand Island for their newborn son, who arrived at 9:28 a.m. on Dec. 27 at Sisters Hospital. Henry weighed 8 pounds, 2.7 ounces.

It just so happens that the name Henry was the seventh most popular boy's name for males born in 2018 in Catholic Health System hospitals, including Sisters, Mercy Hospital of Buffalo and Mount St. Mary's Hospital in Lewiston.

Jennifer Menter, of Grand Island, holds her son, Henry Robert Wudyka Menter, who was born on Dec. 27th at Sisters Hospital. Henry was on the top ten list of popular boy names for babies born in 2018 in the Catholic Health-operated hospitals. (Sharon Cantillon/Buffalo News)

Jennifer Menter was surprised to learn of the popularity of the name Henry for baby boys at Catholic Health hospitals.

"It was on a very short list, because my husband said no to the other two. I had only three names that I really liked. One was Noah, one was Oliver, and the other was Henry, which was the only one we both said yes to," she said.

"I just wanted to make sure to pick a name that didn't necessarily have a nickname. I like formal names. So I will call him Henry. He might be called Hank by my husband," she added.

A couple of hospital rooms away, Georgia and Brandon Marzullo of the Town of Tonawanda, were thrilled with their 6 pound, 13 ounce bundle, who was born on Christmas. They named him Oliver, which did not make Catholic Health's top ten list of popular boy's names for 2018.

"The joke has been that I almost named him Kringle," said Brandon Marzullo. "Yeah, the nurse also recommended Nicholas."

Neither of those options made Catholic Health's list of popular boy's names for 2018 either.

Georgia Marzullo, of the Town of Tonawanda, holds her son, Oliver George Marzullo, who was born on Christmas at Sisters Hospital in Buffalo. (Sharon Cantillon/Buffalo News)

Akea Dandridge, a unit clerk in the maternity ward at Sisters, registers many of the names selected by parents for their newborns at the hospital. Dandridge said the trend seems to be towards traditional – if not genuinely old-fashioned – names both for boys and girls.

Michael Hughes, chief of staff at Kaleida Health, which includes Buffalo General Medical Center and Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, said he observed the trend of old-fashioned names gaining popularity as far back as 2001. That's when his daughter, Emma, was born at Mercy Hospital of Buffalo, and where his son, Owen, was born in 2003.

"Ironically, their names are still on the list," Hughes said, referring to their enduring popularity.

"Back then, my wife and I thought they were unique names, but it looks like they're more trendy than anything," Hughes added.

Jennifer Menter acknowledged that the name Henry conformed to that mold.

"It's a classic, old-fashioned, kind of traditional name, and it's kind of who we are: old school, old-fashioned kind of people," Menter said.

Henry Robert Wudyka Menter also has a sister, Natalie, who is 15 months older.

Oliver George Marzullo's 2-year-old big brother is named Harrison. Their mother, Georgia, said the two names go well together.

"I wanted a name that was going to go well with Harrison's name when I'm yelling at them when they're older," she said. "Harrison and Oliver! It just kind of works."

More seriously, Georgia Marzullo said she and her husband were thinking of a name that was traditional, but not one that was too trendy.

"We didn't really want to pigeonhole ourselves into, like, an Italian name. Our last name, obviously, is Italian," Georgia Marzullo said.

The Marzullos said they were unconcerned that Oliver's peers might someday elect to call him by a nickname.

"In my opinion, you can't really stop it if his friends are going to start calling him Ollie. Hopefully, it's nothing worse than that," said Brandon Marzullo.

The Wienckowski's choice of a middle name for Charlotte would be called traditional only in terms of candy.

Chris said it's Reese, named for the popular chocolate and peanut butter-filled candy, a name that Chris' brother also used as a middle name for one of his children.

Kristina said the names together just sounded right.

As she cradled little Charlotte, born 6 pounds, 12 ounces, Kristina said she looked forward to telling her about being the first baby born in the Buffalo area in 2019.

"It'll be a fun story for when she is older," Kristina said.

Story topics: /

There are no comments - be the first to comment