EMS

Williams County EMS paramedic Caitlyn Helms, far left, will be home on maternity leave over the holidays, but the rest of her crew doesn’t mind covering for her. “If you gotta work on the holidays it might as well be with family,” said paramedic Bruce Silkott, second from right. “In this job everybody gets to be a tight-knit family because of what we see and go through together.” Also pictured are Kaliegh Betzer, EMT-advanced and Samantha Brink, EMT-Basic, far right.

Working for Williams County Emergency Medical Services on the holidays isn’t always pleasant, but one crew got their first Christmas miracle before Halloween this year and they are still celebrating.

At 5:05 p.m. Oct. 29, paramedics Amy Baker, Jesse Brumbaugh and Kyle Brigle delivered a healthy baby boy in Edon.

The amazing part: “We had just done an OB (obstetrics) refresher with ProMedica the night before,” said emergency medical technician Samantha Brink. “They delivered right there on the living room floor. Healthy, no complications. Mom had a short stay in the hospital and they went home.”

Brigle said it was his first delivery in 16 years but paramedic Caitlyn Helms had delivered another baby boy in 2018, in the back of an ambulance at the Corrections Center of Northwest Ohio, near Stryker.

“Most of the time when we see people they’re hurt or sick, not feeling well,” Brumbaugh said. “But this was really nice. This was something I’ll always remember.

“I’ve been at other jobs where you don’t work on the holidays and my first year here I was kind of bummed out a little,” he said. “But this is a neat environment — We have our own work family and a lot of great people work here. We’ll be having dinner for Thanksgiving (at the EMS headquarters north of Bryan). We might have to leave and warm it up later, but that’s just part of the job.”

Paramedic Bruce Silkott agreed.

“If you gotta work on the holidays it might as well be with family,” he said. “In this job everybody gets to be a tight-knit family because of what we see and go through together.”

Silkott saw his own Christmas miracle two years ago with the Hicksville Fire Department.

“We responded to a house fire the week before Christmas,” he said. “The guy was more worried about his fiance’s engagement ring than anything else and we ended up finding it.”

The holidays “are just another day when you have to work,” Brink said.

“I worked the last two Christmases and don’t really want to remember them,” she said. “I worked on Halloween too and we had like 10 calls that night. Nothing weird, just really busy.”

She will always remember Thanksgiving Day 2020, though. She was part of a crew that saved a heart attack victim in the county.

Helms said she never minded working on holidays.

“I like it,” she said. “The downside is that all the restaurants are closed, but on those days people are really thankful for what we do.

“When you’re on a run and see people with their families you wish you could be with yours, but every year the younger medics who don’t have kids step up so everyone else can be home with theirs,” Helms said. “It’s really nice when we help each other out. I always did.”

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