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Mom goes into labor at her local pool, teenage lifeguard jumps in ‘to save the day’

Navigating the world of full-time employment can be overwhelming for a teenager in their first job. However, one young lifeguard, Natalie, experienced much more than she expected during her work shift when she found herself assisting a woman in labor.

At the age of 18, Natalie was already known for her remarkable responsibility, which led her to take on the role of a lifeguard at a young age. Aware of her duty to ensure the safety of everyone at the pool, she diligently enforced safety rules and made sure visitors felt secure in the community pool. With three years of experience as a lifeguard, Natalie was well-versed in her job and knew the protocols by heart.

One morning while on duty, Natalie noticed a pregnant woman named Tessa Rider entering the pool area with her husband, Matthew Jones. Although it was unusual to see a heavily pregnant woman at the pool, Natalie didn’t think much of it at first. Tessa, experiencing discomfort in her hip after her due date had passed, sought relief in the water, hence her visit to the community pool with her husband.

Due to Tessa’s condition, Natalie kept a watchful eye on her. Soon, she noticed signs of struggle. Natalie recalled, “She had a pool noodle to try to relieve some tension from all that weight on the front of her, I’m assuming, and then she started crawling out of the pool… and I was like, alright, I need to go check to make sure everything’s okay there.”

As Natalie approached, she realized that Tessa’s water had broken on the pool deck. Matthew informed Natalie that his wife was going into labor, and in that moment, Natalie sprang into action. While Matthew called 911 for assistance, Tessa removed her swimsuit. To Natalie’s surprise, she noticed that the baby was already crowning. Despite the rapidly changing situation, the couple remained remarkably calm.

“I knew I needed to stay calm and level-headed. The couple was very calm about it all while it was happening, which kind of surprised me. So I made sure to keep my head on and stay with them, keep asking them questions, keep them focused on the baby and make sure that they were the most comfortable,” Natalie explained.

With swift thinking, Natalie grabbed the first aid box and any other medical supplies within reach. She also retrieved towels and alerted the front desk for additional assistance. Remaining focused on the task at hand, Natalie helped Tessa find a comfortable position. Finally, the baby arrived, caught by Matthew’s hands. Throughout the entire ordeal, others present at the scene called 911 to ensure that the mother and baby received immediate medical attention.

“If it weren’t for Natalie being there, I wouldn’t have been able to give my attention to Toby,” shared the grateful new mom. Natalie’s quick actions and composed demeanor were instrumental in providing aid during the unexpected delivery, highlighting her bravery and commitment to helping others.

Paul joined the Manchester Evening News in 2004 and Tosbos in 2022. A senior reporter, he's experienced in crime and court reporting - and also holds the defense portfolio.


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