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'Better Than I Could Have Imagined.' Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas On Fatherhood So Far

Facebook/Quinton Lucas
Time with kids is more than just a part of the job now for Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas. He became a new dad in April.

In April, Mayor Quinton Lucas announced the birth of his son, Bennett. What's his favorite part? "Just looking at him."

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas became one of the city’s most prominent new dads just a few months ago when he and his wife, Katherine Carttar, welcomed Bennett.

As he does with many events, the mayor broke the news on Twitter: "We are proud to announce the birth of our son," he posted on April 19. "Although his first few days have been a bit of a challenge medically, we look forward to introducing our son and Kansas City's newest Chiefs' fan, Bennett, to Kansas Citians when the time is right."

So far, Bennett has not made any public appearances, though he sometimes gets mentioned in his dad's posts. On June 7 on Facebook, for instance, Lucas reveled in a drive down "the beautifully resurfaced 75th Street," and added, "even though the hungry baby in the back wanted us to drive home faster."

More recently, he commented with envy when Brittany Matthews, the fiancée of another prominent new Kansas City dad, Patrick Mahomes, exulted when their 4-month-old daughter slept through the night.

"So you're saying it will happen one day...Can't wait," Lucas tweeted in response.

A few days before his first Father’s Day as a father — which he plans to spend just “hanging out” with his family — Lucas spoke to KCUR and offered a bit more than a tweet’s worth about what fatherhood has been like so far.

KCUR: What’s it like to learn how to be a father while the whole city watches?

LUCAS: It’s actually been much better than I could have ever imagined. Everybody is super supportive, everyone has been good to me, and frankly, I’m just blessed to be a part of it all.

KCUR: Are you getting a lot of advice from people?

LUCAS: You know, I am getting a lot of good advice. I’ve been lucky enough to get a lot of offers of babysitters, and it’s interesting that everybody on the city council has children, so they have given lots of pointers about what I’m doing right and what I’m doing wrong along the way.

KCUR: Has there been anything about fatherhood so far that’s exactly as you expected it to be?

LUCAS: Yes, there are some things. People have talked to me a lot about all of the feelings you have looking into your child’s eyes. I get that all the time. I am also very excited all the time about everything that entails having a child, from getting to see him tonight, to even him waking up in the middle of the night. A lot of that stuff was predictable, but still absolutely lovely.

KCUR: Is there anything you’ve been completely surprised by?

LUCAS: You know, I’ve been surprised by just how… by just how easy to figure out they are. It is not as impossible as you might think in some ways to say, “Uh oh, he needs to eat” and all of that. So, I figured that out sooner than I would have otherwise thought.

KCUR: That’s great news. What’s been your favorite part?

LUCAS: Just looking at him, staring at him. Seeing his eyes and all that has been a huge plus for me. I’m very lucky, very excited about my first Father’s Day. It gives me appreciation not just for how hard every father in our city works, but how hard every mother does. My wife has been at home with him working nonstop, raising him, growing him, and I’m lucky to be along for the ride.

Anne Kniggendorf is a staff writer/editor at the Kansas City Public Library and freelance contributor to KCUR. She is the author of "Secret Kansas City."
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