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Teenage lifeguard helps couple deliver baby at YMCA pool in Longmont

Natalie Lucas
Posted at 5:09 PM, Aug 03, 2022

LONGMONT, Colo. — A normal shift at a normal summer job for a Longmont teen turned into anything but after she helped deliver a baby while at work.

“It’s a pretty calm day usually,” 18-year-old lifeguard Natalie Lucas said, talking about her regular Sunday shift.

So "calm" was what she was expecting on a Sunday morning late last month. That’s when expectant mother Tessa Rider, who was 9 months pregnant, came to the pool.

“Thought, "Oh, I’ll go for a swim. It’ll be nice and cool,"” Rider explained.

Rider’s swim didn’t last long.

“It suddenly dawned on me we weren’t making it to the hospital and he was coming out right then and there,” she said.

“The husband tells me they’re having the baby, and I’m like, "Alright." And the adrenaline kicks in right then and there," Lucas said.

What happened next happened quickly, according to all those involved. Lucas called for someone to call 911, grabbed a medical bag and towels, and was right there with the couple as Tessa pushed.

“She was there to do anything we asked. And the first thing I could think of was could someone hold my back up. And she did, and it was perfect,” Rider explained.

“The baby was already kind of coming out, and it was quick. I would say less than 5 minutes that it all happened,” Lucas said.

Baby Tobin was born happy and healthy on the pool deck of the YMCA.

“Without her, I would not have been able to safely focus my attention that Tobin came out and that he was safe and healthy,” dad Matthew Jones said.

Right after the birth, someone snapped a photo of the four — dad, mom, baby and lifeguard — smiling and giving a thumbs up while helping support Tessa’s back.

Teenage lifeguard helps couple deliver baby at YMCA pool in Longmont

“I stayed calm, I helped them through from beginning to end that Sunday. It was quite the crazy thing to happen, but I’m pretty proud of myself,” Lucas said.

Lucas is off to college in the fall, after an experience she wasn’t expecting, but one that she admits she’ll never forget.

“I do hope to send the little guy birthday cards here and there,” the teen said with a smile.

As for baby Tobin, he gets a lifetime membership to the YMCA.

“He’s definitely going to be a swimmer,” Rider joked.