JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas –
After a long and arduous 2020, marked by one of the worst pandemics in history, Brooke Army Medical Center welcomed some good news with the birth of Stella Luna Nolasco at 3:26 a.m. Jan. 1.
The new parents, Air Force Staff Sgt. Jessica Ojeda-Nolasco, a C5 aviation research manager at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, and her husband Isaac Nolasco, a police officer in New Braunfels, Texas, received a special visit from Brig. Gen. Shan Bagby, BAMC commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. Thurman Reynolds. Bagby and Reynolds personally delivered a gift basket and took time to congratulate mom and dad and welcome the baby to BAMC’s military family.
This year marked the 21st year in a row local hospitals came together to welcome San Antonio’s “Baby New Year” by contributing and presenting gifts to the firstborn after midnight on Jan. 1. This year, North Central Baptist Hospital earned the distinction of the first baby born in the city at 12:53 a.m.
The first baby of San Antonio received several gifts from local hospitals and area businesses, but Stella Luna received a special gift basket prepared by the BAMC Auxiliary upon her arrival.
The Nolasco’s daughter was not the firstborn in San Antonio, but they had a night to remember as their first child came into the world.
The evening proved to be a little chaotic. There was a small fire in the basement that required the family to be moved from one ward to another due to some smoke.
“I started smelling some kind of electrical smoke and they ended up moving us out (of the ward),” Nolasco said. “The staff did really well. Their professionalism was really good.”
“We have an amazing team of nurses here,” Reynolds said. “We got a situation report that the team did a phenomenal job.”
Baby Stella Luna and her mother had their share of excitement during labor. “At one point I was told I might need a C-section,” Ojeda-Nolasco stated. “I really wanted to try and have her naturally.”
Another complication sent Ojeda-Nolasco to the operating room. “There was one nurse who was like my own personal cheerleader,” she said. “That’s really what I needed.”
When asked if they had any New Year’s resolutions, Ojeda-Nolasco said they just want to keep their baby alive and healthy.
Bagby jokingly asked, “You mean there’s no manual?” as the new parents laughed and looked proudly at their daughter. Admitting to fears of being first-time parents, Ojeda-Nolasco will have the comfort and experience of her mom to assist them for two weeks.
Normally, when a baby is born, there are comparisons to the parents and debates as to who the baby looks like the most. Reynolds said he could see the likeness of both parents in Stella Luna.
Ojeda-Nolasco said, “Really? I don’t see any likeness.” Nolasco jokingly said his wife got mad because she did all the work and their daughter was born looking like him.
As 2021 begins with the hope of vaccines countering the effects of COVID, the Nolasco family begins with the joy of a new normal called Stella Luna.