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Off-Duty Nurse Hears Frantic Man in Parking Lot, Races to Help Him and Wife Deliver Baby

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Madison Fritter of Auburn, California, was anticipating the arrival of her second child in March.

What she and her husband did not suspect was how quickly and on his own terms the newest addition would arrive.

In the wee hours of the morning, on St. Patrick’s Day, Fritter got a surprise.

“It was about 1:30 a.m. and I woke up and my water broke,” she told KOVR-TV. “So I wake up my husband and he goes, ‘Are you serious,’ because it was about two weeks early.”

Fritter stayed at home for the next eight hours laboring, but she and her family headed to UC Davis as labor progressed.

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“My contractions were moderate on the drive, but they picked up very suddenly only in the last few minutes of the drive,” Fritter told UC Davis Health.

“By the time my husband Michael parked the car, the baby was crowning.”

“I’m realizing, ‘Oh my gosh, the baby is coming,'” Fritter said, according to KOVR.

Madison’s mother, sister and a passing hospital employee took what they had on hand and prepared to greet baby Maverick. As Madison’s sister caught the newborn, an off-duty nurse passed by.

Jenna Ricks is a labor and delivery nurse at Adventist Health Lodi Memorial, but today she was visiting UC Davis because her own newborn son, Miles, had some health issues and was staying at the hospital. She was in the parking garage when she saw a familiar scene in a very unfamiliar place.

“And then I hear ‘I need a shoelace.’ And, I was like, okay there’s only one thing that you would need a shoelace for in the medical world,” she said, according to KOVR.

“The nurse that had run over was like, ‘Oh my God! Thank God, you’re here this is my worst nightmare, like, you’re in charge now. And I’m like ‘okay, I got this.'”

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While Ricks attended to Fritter, Fritter’s husband ran to get assistance. Eventually, Fritter made it into the hospital, and her 8-pound, 2-ounce baby boy checked out as healthy.

It was certainly a unique delivery, and both women are thankful for the other woman’s presence.

“I said ‘I did it? This is happening? Like I just gave birth in a parking garage?'” Fritter later said of the unorthodox situation. “It was a once-in-a-lifetime thing. I felt like I was on an episode of ‘This Is Us.'”

“What are the odds of her dropping right behind my car and me getting help up in the pediatric unit,” Ricks said. “Had I been a few seconds or few minutes earlier I would have missed it.

“It was a celestial moment like it was something meant to be. She needed me to make sure she didn’t bleed out or hemorrhage … and I really needed her to give me that last bit of strength to get through his stay. It really lifted my spirits and reminded me that I love what I do.”

Ricks’ son Miles made it home from his NICU stay, and according to her Facebook page, Miles and Maverick have officially met. Ricks and Fritter are now friends, and according to KOVR, the two are already planning to set up some playdates in the future.

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking