Firefighters use training to save newborn


Emergency responders train for any and all possibilities they might encounter on the job, whether they expect to run into these situations or not.


One such situation they are trained for is child birth, of which the 14th Civil Engineer Squadron Firefighters responded to the evening of Feb. 3 at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi.


The Firehouse received a call about a baby in housing who was not breathing. A team of seven responders and two vehicles went out to assist. When the team arrived to the house, Abby Meskimen, the mother, was found standing next to the bed using emergency techniques on the newborn, to get him breathing.


“It was at that moment we realized what was happening,” said Tech. Sgt. Thomas Warner, 14th CES noncommissioned officer in charge of the Emergency Communications Center. “It was a child birth that had just taken place. We had thought it was an infant having problems, not a birth complication.”


The team began bringing in medical supplies to treat the newborn.


“We got there and just reacted to the situation,” said Larry Roy, 14th CES Driver Operator. “I had never run across this particular situation, but I was trained for it and that training just took over.”


After a short time of treatment, the newborn began to cry and breathe on his own.


“Very shortly after arrival, we got the baby breathing on his own,” Warner said. “We then refocused everything. It became a two patient scenario with providing care to not only the baby, but the mother as well.”


The mother was then treated for shock. Care was provided for both until local community ambulances arrived to take them to the hospital. Both the mother and newborn made it through the situation with no lasting injury, partly due to the immediate medical care they received.


“That’s what we do as first responders, we react,” Roy said. “We overcome whatever kind of shock over any emergency situation and just react. Our training prepares us for situations like this.”


This is a testament to the skill of the Emergency Medical Responders on base. They took a bad situation, one they had never encountered before as well, and turned it into a positive outcome.


“We are so blessed,” Abby said. “The firemen did a great job and really pulled us through. The Lord was looking upon us that day bringing Khyrim Nikao (the newborn) into the world.”