In a “one in a million” chance, the community midwife was filling up her vehicle and stepped in to help.
But after safely seeing the baby boy into the world she left…without leaving her name.
Now Nicola McDowall and her partner Julian Skinner are trying to trace the “angel of mercy” to say thank you.
Mother-of-three Ms McDowall, 34, was at home in Edinburgh when she went into labour shortly before 9pm on Monday.
She set off with Mr Skinner driving to get to hospital.
But the baby refused to wait and they were forced to pull into the Sainsbury’s petrol station at the city’s Cameron Toll shopping centre.
We would like to find out who she is to say thank you
Ms McDowall, 34, said: “We were on the way to hospital and in the back of the car I felt I had to push.
“I called the triage at the hospital and told them, and they basically said to stop the car wherever we were and get an ambulance.”
Mr Skinner, 44, said: “I just jumped out of the car and flew into the petrol station and told the guy to get some help. I was pretty scared. The next thing I knew a woman stepped forward and said she was a midwife, she was just getting some petrol. The chances are probably about one in a million.”
Ms McDowall said: “She helped me to lie down in the back of the car and by this time the baby’s head was there. She helped deliver him – she really was an angel of mercy.”
Mother and baby were taken to hospital for checks but were soon able to return home.
Ms McDowall said: “Everything went well and he is doing absolutely fine.”
The baby boy’s first name has not yet been chosen.
But his middle name will be Cameron, after where he was born.
Mr Skinner said the couple wanted to contact the midwife.
He explained: “We would like to find out who she is to say thank you. We did thank her at the time but she was off pretty quickly.”
Ms McDowall added: “I did ask her name but with everything else that was going on I’ve no idea now what she said.”