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‘It could have ended differently,’ firefighter says of baby delivered roadside

<i>WLOS</i><br/>It was back to business as usual at the Weaverville Fire Department on Friday. But Wednesday was anything but normal.
WLOS
WLOS
It was back to business as usual at the Weaverville Fire Department on Friday. But Wednesday was anything but normal. "So

By Kristen Aguirre

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    WEAVERVILLE, North Carolina (WLOS) — It was back to business as usual at the Weaverville Fire Department on Friday. But Wednesday was anything but normal.

“So, we were dispatched for a possible labor, and we responded, showed up on scene and the patient was definitely in active labor,” Weaverville Fire Capt. Casey Duckworth said.

A call to help an expecting mother is routine, said Duckworth, who responded to the medical emergency.

“About five minutes after we got her in the ambulance, we were getting all our equipment ready and she said she was ready,” Duckworth said.

Within minutes, everything changed.

“Mom’s like, ‘I’m pushing, I’m pushing.’ So, the baby’s head came out,” Duckworth said. “We delivered a baby there.”

There, on the side of the road in an ambulance. At 7 pounds 15 ounces, Runa Elysian Waddell made her debut in the world.

“As soon as the head came out, we said, ‘Stop the truck,'” Duckworth said.

Birth is a hectic but not unfamiliar scenario to Duckworth.

“You’re going from one patient to two patients really quick,” he said.

Duckworth delivered a baby before — in a home — on a previous call.

“It was a little easier than this one,” he said. “I mean, we’re in a tight box in the back of an ambulance, moving.”

This birth required the experience and quick thinking of Duckworth and the two other first responders in the ambulance.

“It could have ended differently,” Duckworth said.

Luckily, baby and mom are now happy and healthy. They were released from the hospital Friday.

“We see so much death in this job. And to bring life in is just a very rewarding and good feeling,” Duckworth said.

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