Girl born at rainy Frisco intersection |

Girl born at rainy Frisco intersection

Nicole Formosa
Summit Daily/Brad Odekirk

FRISCO – When newborn Maria Fernanda Espinosa-Ruiz gets a little older, her mother, Flor Ruiz, will have quite the story to tell her firstborn daughter about how she came into the world.Ruiz, whose official due date wasn’t until the Fourth of July, gave birth to Maria Sunday evening during a brief summer rainstorm at the busy intersection of Dillon Dam Road and Summit Boulevard in Frisco.”When we got to the intersection, I got out of the car and the baby was already half-way out,” Ruiz said Monday morning from her hospital bed at Summit Medical Center.Ruiz, 23, woke up Sunday at about 8 a.m. with contractions, and thought it could be the day she and her husband, Oscar Espinosa, welcomed their new daughter. They went to the hospital later that afternoon, but since Ruiz wasn’t dilating, her doctors told her around 5:20 p.m. she could go home to Dillon.

“My water broke as soon as I got home,” Ruiz said. Then, her contractions picked up in pace.Ruiz, Espinosa, their 3-year-old son and Ruiz’s mom, who’d come up from Denver for the birth of her granddaughter, piled back into the family’s Geo Tracker to head to the hospital for a second time, but plans changed along the way. Ruiz felt Maria’s head emerging when the car first turned onto the Dillon Dam Road from Dillon, and by the time they were approaching Summit Boulevard, Ruiz knew there was no chance of making it almost a mile-and-a-half farther to Summit Medical Center in time for Maria’s arrival.She got out of the car at the intersection, and a few people from the minivan in the next lane hurriedly cleared out the seats from the back of their vehicle and helped load Ruiz into the back of the van, where, at 6 p.m., she quickly delivered a healthy 7 pound, 7 ounce baby girl with a full head of dark hair.

“I was pretty calm actually. I wasn’t even screaming or anything. I was just doing what I had to pretty much. It was pretty good,” Ruiz said.When Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue Lt. Shaun Sawyer and his crew arrived on-scene, Ruiz was sitting in the back of the minivan, among a small crowd of bystanders, holding her newborn baby girl, who was wrapped snugly in a blanket.”She was really calm, unbelievably calm for what just happened, I mean giving birth in the middle of an intersection?” Sawyer said. Emergency workers, including firefighters and paramedics, called Oscar over to cut the umbilical cord, then whisked the baby into a waiting ambulance to keep her warm and dry. The ambulance driver then carried mother and daughter to Summit Medical Center, where they continued resting Monday. “It went very well,” said responding paramedic Laurie Mignone.

While the story of Maria’s sudden arrival is one Ruiz and her family will retell for decades, it also left an impression on the emergency services workers who helped with the birth.”That was the first time I’ve been on an actual birth, it’s been close a couple times, but that was the first actual birth,” said Sawyer, a 15-year veteran with Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue. “Since I was the only one with kids, I got pushed to the front.”No doubt the experience will be one bystanders won’t soon forget either. In fact, two of the families who lent a helping hand during Maria’s birth Sunday visited Ruiz at the medical center Monday, leaving behind cards, flowers and well-wishes for the young family.Vail Daily, Vail, Colorado

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