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Firefighter & paramedic get recognition for delivering baby
Firefighter Brad Schemper is shown with mom Lara Vargas and Olivia. - photo by DENNIS WYATT

Damion Vargas’ wife was going to have a baby.

Unfortunately baby Olivia didn’t want to wait to get to the hospital.

So dad called 9-1-1 in the wee hours of Sept. 27 to summon emergency crews as his wife Lara was going into labor.

The dispatcher had Vargas describe his wife’s condition and told him to get some things including a shoe lace.

He asked, “what for?”

The dispatcher said it was needed because he was about to deliver his baby daughter.

“I’m a guy,” Vargas said at Tuesday’s Manteca City Council meeting. “I don’t have shoe laces laying around.”

But then he heard the siren of the engine company dispatched from station No. 3 on Louise Avenue.

Fore Chief Kirk Waters said Vargas “did a nice job waving the firefighters down on the street to know exactly which house it was.”

Firefighter Brad Scehmper was the first through the door. He located mom upstairs in labor.

Schemper, determining birth was imminent, used his medical training to help Lara Vargas safely deliver Olivia.

A few minutes behind Schemper was Manteca District Ambulance paramedic Brett Jones. He was instrumental in making sure Olivia was resuscitated successfully and that all was well with her mom.

Both Schemper and Jones were recognized by the Manteca City Council Tuesday for the successful delivery.

Chief Waters noted emergency crews from police officers and firefighters to paramedics train for calls that they call “low frequency/high risk such as child birth away from a hospital.

“The emergencies don’t happen every day but when they do the consequences can be severe - such as the loss of a life,” Waters said.

One such example is the training required to deliver and resuscitate a newborn.

Both Schemper and Jones received plaques from Waters describing their first successful deliveries. Olivia’s sister Ahlsondra got a pink replica fire helmet, mom got flowers, and Olivia a baby gift.

As for dad, he got a Manteca Fire Department coffee cup.