Magic Valley Paramedics Station 1 in Twin Falls has seen plenty of interesting moments, but a recent one was an exciting first – a first birthday party, to be exact.
Bryson Romer and his mom, Kortney, celebrated turning 1 alongside the men and women who helped deliver Bryson on the side of a road and get them safely to the hospital. The Magic Valley Paramedics staff is employed by St. Luke's.As his first birthday approached, Kortney reached out to see if she could bring Bryson by on his birthday to meet everyone involved.
When it became evident Bryson was coming last year, Kortney thought she had plenty of time to wait for her husband to get home from work and drive her to the hospital. He made it home, but they didn’t make it far from their house in rural Jerome County before having to pull over.
“He had asked me before we left the house, ‘do we need to call an ambulance?’” Kortney explained. “I was like ‘no, we’re fine, let’s just get to the car, we’re good.’”
Halfway to the interstate, Kortney realized she felt just like she did in the moments before her daughter Kylie was born two years earlier. She told her husband to call 911.
Crystal Estrada, the Southern Idaho Regional Communications Center dispatcher who took the call, was excited to meet the baby one year later.
“Thankfully we have a program that guides us through everything so it’s easier to walk them through it,” Estrada said of the birth, noting it was the first time she talked a father through the process over the phone.
“It’s so good to see (Bryson) right now. I was honored when they offered to do it,” she said of the birthday party invitation.
Lieutenant Taylor Hunsaker and firefighter Dylon Baker from Rock Creek Fire District were the first to reach the roadside delivery in progress — a first for both.Bryson wasn’t quite fully out, but close. Hunsaker welcomed the baby into the world and was so focused on his task that he forgot to tell Kortney if it was a boy or a girl until she asked. A crew from Magic Valley Paramedics arrived just a few minutes later.
“I was never so happy to see them in my life,” Hunsaker said of their arrival.
“We got there, and the baby was all wrapped up,” said Magic Valley Paramedics’ Ryan McClimans. “I was the EMT at the time, so my paramedic got in there and clamped and cut the cord and then handed me the baby all wrapped up and I went in the back of the ambulance.”
One year later, McClimans is now a paramedic herself, and was all smiles as she was reintroduced to the baby she took care of in the back of the ambulance, saying to Bryson she was his first babysitter.
Bryson is too young to understand what this first birthday party was all about, but he might have questions when he eventually learns his birth certificate lists a milepost on Idaho State Highway 25 as his place of birth. Now he’ll have a picture of the multi-agency team brought together by that birth.
“It is a joint effort. We all work together,” Hunsaker said.
And mom Kortney finally got a chance to thank that team in person, saying “I’m sure you didn’t get a thank you that day but thank you!”
Kelly Franson is the public relations manager at St. Luke's Magic Valley.