Martyka Sutor and her husband Steven are expressing “heartfelt gratitude” after firefighters and paramedics helped deliver the couple’s second child on the bedroom floor of their Morgan Crossing-area home earlier this month.
The home delivery, on March 4, was not part of the original plan, Martyka explained in an email to Peace Arch News, as the family’s new addition – a “perfect” daughter, Maia James – was not expected to arrive as quickly as she did.
“(My) contractions started at 2:45 p.m. and labour progressed exponentially faster than expected,” Martyka said, adding that at shortly after 4 p.m., a few minutes after calling her sister to come and pick up the couple’s 18-month-old son, Arlo, so the parents could head to Surrey Memorial Hospital, Steven found himself simultaneously holding Arlo in one arm, calling 911 while preparing “to catch the imminent bundle of joy.”
“There was no stopping her,” Martyka said.
Firefighters from Surrey’s Fire Hall 17 – located on 32 Avenue in Rosemary Heights – were the first to arrive at the home, followed a short time later by paramedics.
Martyka heaped praise upon the first responders not just for their role in delivering the baby, but also for how they treated their toddler, Arlo. Though they did not find out until after the fact, while the home-birth was underway, some firefighters took the youngster out to their truck, and let him sit in the front seat while flashing the lights.
Arlo got a further tour of fire trucks – and the fire hall – a few days later, when the family stopped by Hall 17 to say thank you to those who helped them.
“I’m not sure who was more excited,” Martyka said. “Us, to thank the team, or the first responders to take selfies with Maia. It was a day we will never forget.
“The birth of our daughter definitely did not go to plan but because of the care from the first responders – we truly wouldn’t change anything about it.
This is the second time in just a few months that firefighters have delivered a baby on the Semiahmoo Peninsula. In January, members of a White Rock fire crew did the same for a family that lives on Columbia Avenue.