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Natalie Lucas: ‘Hero’ lifeguard, 18, gives birth after woman goes into labor at pool

An 18-year-old lifeguard from Colorado, Natalie Lucas, gave birth when a woman went into labor in a swimming pool. This incident happened on July 24 at a YMCA center in Longmont, Colorado, where Lucas was employed as a lifeguard.

When Tessa Rider and her husband Matthew Jones went swimming, she claimed to the Washington Post that she was long overdue. The 29-year-old mother claimed that one of the only things that helped her while awaiting her delivery was staying in the water. “We knew the baby was coming. We just didn’t know if it was going to be a week, two weeks or today,” she told the Post.

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Rider admitted she felt slight contractions before going for a swim, but didn’t think that was a solid indicator the baby was coming. Her waters broke as she stepped into the water. Her husband, Matthew Jones, who was by the pool, immediately began going through his phone to call for help. Rider then suddenly felt like she had to “push”. Then she called her husband and told him to pack up her things and get in the car with her.

Natalie Lucas, the guard who was working at the time, ran to Jones, who had been speaking to emergency responders. When he informed Lucas that they were having a baby, she immediately jumped into action. Despite the lack of formal clinical training, Lucas, who has been a lifeguard for three years, said her adrenaline levels surged. While using a walkie-talkie to update staff on the situation, Lucas shouted for some other swimmers to call 911. She grabbed a first aid kit and some towels and rushed to the couple’s aid.

“I stayed calm and didn’t freak out because that’s what you have to do in this job. You can’t really hesitate or wait for someone else to come. You are the lifeguard, you are the lifesaver,” said the young hero. Lucas supported the pregnant mother’s head while Jones helped the baby enter the world. A short time later, Rider gave birth to a beautiful baby boy – Tobin “Toby” Thomas Rider.

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Lifeguard Natalie Lucas with the couple and newborn baby Toby (Tessa Rider and Matthew Jones)
Lifeguard Natalie Lucas with the couple and newborn baby Toby (Tessa Rider and Matthew Jones)

In a Facebook post, the Northern Colorado YMCA wrote, “Her labor was progressing so quickly that — with the assistance of a Y lifeguard and Tessa’s husband Matthew — this beautiful little boy was delivered on the Y’s pool deck before emergency medical services arrived .”

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While waiting for the ambulance to take Rider to the hospital, the couple made sure the baby was okay. The couple’s older daughters Lila, 6, and Abigail, 2, attended chapel with their grandparents when their brother was born. The two met their family at the hospital as soon as they got the news.

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Though Lucas admits she’s saved quite a few children in her career, she’s not a registered nurse. After graduating high school, Lucas will enroll at San Diego State College to study criminology. While congratulating Rider and Jones, her employer remarked that Lucas’ actions were certainly not “part of the job description”.

The North Colorado YMCA said in a statement, “We train our lifeguards to respond to emergencies and that’s exactly what Natalie did. Realizing Tessa was going into labour, the adrenaline pushed her by and she responded with compassion and caring and grit.” that they are healthy and doing well.”

The new baby in the family received a lifetime subscription to the fitness facility, according to Y. Little Toby will also receive birthday cards from Lucas. “I’m so glad the baby is doing well and they now have a new addition to their beautiful family. I was really happy to be able to help them,” Lucas said.

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