Hospital sees 10,000th birth

Baker child puts Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center over milestone
by: John Klicker, Nicole Baker of Gresham shows off her snoozing Tyrus, who was the 10,000th baby born at Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center, as proud papa, Leon, and daughter, Olivia, look on.

Eyes shut tightly against this strange new world, Tyrus Leon Baker doesn't understand what all the fuss is about.

Tyrus sleeps soundly through the flashing of a camera, voices other than Mom and Dad's and all the rest that comes with being the 10,000th baby born at Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center.

He was born at 4:12 p.m. Monday, April 16, in room No. 7 in the hospital's family birth center. Mom Nicole says that before the quick delivery, a nurse happened to mention that her child may be the 10,000th.

'It's been such a pleasant experience,' says Nicole, a stay-at-home mom, citing the 'great nurses' on staff.

Those nurses have been busy, helping to deliver an average of 90 babies a month. The birth center opened in 1995, and it was doubled in size nine years later, says hospital spokeswoman Maggie Huffman.

The birth rate has increased drastically, says nurse Carol Blankenship, the center's manager. The center delivered 5,000 babies in its first seven years, and reached the 10,000 mark in just three more years.

'There are times when we've been completely full,' Blankenship says.

Tyrus' father, Leon, says the name he chose is Norwegian for thunder.

'10,000 is cool,' said the thunderstruck Leon, a mixed martial arts coach.

The Gresham couple, which has two daughters, Olivia, 3, and Isabella, 6, moved here a year and a half ago from Salt Lake City.

'We were so excited' to have a boy, Nicole says.

As for Tyrus, he seems to be adjusting to life on the outside. He's been a 'little fussy - he has a lot to say,' his mother says. And now his parents have another story about his big first day.