'A miracle'

Woman gives birth to healthy boy amid 7.1-magnitude earthquake in Mexico

Jessica Mendoza and her baby son Adolfo Iñaki, who was in the middle of being born when a powerful earthquake jolted Mexico this week. (Twitter / EL PAÍS)

A woman in Mexico was inside a hospital in Mexico City on Tuesday, in the throes of labor — dilated six centimeters to be exact — when the earth started shaking. The trembling was from a powerful 7.1-magnitude quake that struck not far outside the nation’s capital. But with buildings falling and pandemonium ensuing, never mind that her first baby was on the way, Jessica Mendoza was forced to evacuate the hospital. Out in the streets was a scene of devastation: Buildings collapsing, people screaming in fear. This was Mendoza’s new delivery room.

Her doctor, nurses and a midwife found space on an open park bench nearby the hospital. They put tarp sheets they got from some police officers down on the bench and Mendoza resumed labor.

“It was a miracle,” Mendoza told the Spanish-language newspaper, EL PAÍS. “Despite everything happening around me I carried on with the birth. I completely isolated myself. I didn’t hear a thing. I just remember that there was my doctor, the nurses, my husband and my mother. They made their way through the chaos in order to find a safe space,” she reportedly said.

“I want to thank Doctor Elisabeth Valencia and all of her team. They were magnificent,” Mendoza, who had been in labor for an hour and delivered her baby son without the aid of anesthetics, added.

After about an hour, hospital officials declared the building structurally sound and Mendoza, along with her husband, Amado Ortiz, and other patients were allowed back inside. She and her husband named the child Adolfo Iñaki. “The world was falling around us and he came to save ours. It’s the greatest message of love and example of strength and bravery for the world,” Ortiz said. Indeed, the miraculous story has provided a glimmer of hope in Mexico amid an otherwise grim situation. Officials have said the death toll from the quake stands at more than 200, including at least 30 children who were killed when their school collapsed.

Read the full story at The Telegraph.

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EDITOR'S NOTE: This article is independent of and separate from any views of The New York Times.