An old wives' tale that eating spicy food can induce labor proved true for a 21-year-old Talent woman Wednesday night.
Shortly after eating a slice of pepperoni pizza at her home in the Talent Mobile Estates, Marilu Medina gave birth to a baby boy — in her driveway.
"My water broke and I knew we weren't going to be able to make it to the hospital," said Medina, who was on her way out to the family van when it happened.
"I took one hard push and the baby came out quick. It was really intense."
Her husband, Moi, was strapping in their 2-year-old son, Erik, in the backseat when his wife started her labor.
He rushed to Medina and grabbed the newborn boy as he exited the womb.
Medina's mother, Rosie Ruiz, quickly wrapped the child in a towel.
A 9-1-1 dispatcher informed Ruiz to tie a shoestring around the umbilical cord and keep the baby warm.
"It all happened so fast, I completely lost track of time. I was praying the entire time for the baby's health," said Ruiz.
"I'm still in shock and thankful that the birth ended great."
The quick delivery came as a surprise to Medina, who had endured 10 hours of labor when her first child was born.
"I was worried about the condition of my baby because of the cold temperature," Medina said.
"I kept having to calm my mother and husband because they were panicking so much."
Jackson County Fire District No. 5 arrived first to the scene. The crew used the emergency birth kit to clamp the umbilical cord and cut it safely.
They also removed the placenta and checked the vital signs of the baby.
Ashland Fire and Rescue and Talent police also responded. Medina was taken by ambulance to the Family Birth Center of Rogue Valley Medical Center.
Fire district Capt. Frank Banfield said the baby was in great condition when crews arrived at the Medinas' home.
"This was a rare occurrence for our district," he said. "In my 31 years of service, this is only the second time (I can remember something like this) ever happening."
The Medina family moved to Talent two months ago and were excited about having another child.
The boy weighs 7 pounds, 4 ounces. The Medinas hadn't picked a name by Thursday night, but said David was a possibility.
Reach Southern Oregon University intern Jake Williky at 776-8791 or at email@example.com.