By Gavin Thomas
KNTV (NBC Bay Area) Reporter
On a Saturday morning in September 2018, a controlled explosion sent the very last remnants of the old eastern span on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge under the water and forever out of sight.
For those who drive over its replacement finished by Caltrans in 2013, memories of the old, massive steel structure fade with each passing trip.
Although, for San Francisco Fire Department firefighter and paramedic Chris Posey, there is one memory that will never disappear.
“I remember it like it was yesterday,” Posey said.
It was actually more like 29 years ago.
At 5 a.m. on Feb. 12, 1990, Posey, in just his second year on the job, was dispatched to the Bay Bridge. “Woman in labor at toll plaza number 14. That’s all the information we got,” Posey said.
Posey arrived just in time at the Caltrans booth to be the one who got to welcome 9-pound, 6-ounce Marcial Pacek into the world.
Over the course of his 30-year career, Posey says delivering the “Bay Bridge Baby,” as the news would come to call him, remained a highlight for him.
“I will always remember how he looked and cried and how he felt in my arms,” Posey said. “I always wondered what happened to the kid.”
Well, Pacek is certainly not a kid anymore, and recently Posey got to find out first-hand what happened him. The two reunited, three decades after their first meeting, at San Francisco Fire Department headquarters.
Now living in Southern California, Pacek said the story of his birth is legendary in his family. A few months ago, though, he was curious to learn more about that day. Some late-night internet research led him to Posey and their subsequent reunion.
Pacek is now old enough to say thank you to Posey for all he did that day, and also share a bit of news: A year and a half ago, Pacek became an EMT himself.
“I love what you guys do. I love working as an EMT,” Pacek told Posey and room full of other fire department members. “I haven’t had any deliveries, though.”
Pacek isn’t sure if what happened in 1990 had anything to do with his choice of careers, but for Chris, there is a special meaning to it.
Knowing that a life he saved so many years ago is now carrying on his life-saving tradition means the world to him.
“It’s kind of like my career has come full circle,” Posey said.