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2024’s first baby comes out fighting right after midnight

14 Jan 2024

NICU ready, responds at the bedside

By: Shannon Priem, senior content specialist

Broden Michael Culpepper arrived 40 seconds after midnight Jan. 1 as our Family Birth Center’s first baby of 2024.

Broden started life as a fighter, said his dad, Jonathan. “He wasn’t breathing, he was at fifty percent oxygen, so I just started to panic,” he said.

"It felt like forever, but it took about 30 seconds of intubation to clear out phlegm and rubbing to bring oxygen levels up,” said mom Patricia, crediting both birth and NICU teams. Learn more about our NICU here.

“They’re all amazing and NICU staff were already there in the room to help! We just sat and prayed,” she said, noting an earlier symptom alerted them to be there — just in case.

Broden was due Jan. 4, but they were pushing for a 2023 “tax baby” at the last minute (literally) when labor started early. They’d gone out to dinner when Jonathan noticed Patricia checking her watch after grimacing every two to three minutes. He knew it was time. The dinner she ordered is still in the fridge.

As Salem Hospital’s first baby, the Culpeppers received a gift basket and blanket embroidered with “First Baby of 2024.”