Central Florida hospitals celebrate first babies of new year

Babies delivered seconds into 2022, hospital officials say

Melvin Rodríguez (left, center), with parents Jesenia González Colón (left, right) and Brian Rodríguez (left, left), along with baby Raheem, (right, right) and his mother (right, left), pictured the morning of Jan. 1, 2022. (AdventHealth Orlando, Orlando Health)

KISSIMMEE, Fla. – Meet Melvin Rodriguez, a baby boy who AdventHealth Celebration said was born just seconds after the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, earning him the title “first born of the new year” for the regional hospital system.

The baby was delivered at 12:00:05 a.m. on Saturday, according to a news release.

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The seven pound, 10 ounce and 20-inch-long little guy was born to parents Jesenia González Colón and Brian Rodríguez, both from Oviedo, according to the release.

At Orlando Health Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies, a baby boy named Raheem was also delivered during the first minute of 2022, according to a news release.

Baby Raheem, coming in at six pounds, 11.7 ounces, is his family’s third child. To mark the occasion, Central Florida Diaper Bank CEO Sharon Lyles said that a year’s supply of diapers, roughly 3,600, will be donated to Raheem’s parents.

“We wanted to make the donation to help the families reduce the cost of diapers, which are costly, and to help give their babies a healthy start,” Lyles said.

In Brevard County, officials at Health First said that three babies were born between 2:35 a.m. and 3:13 a.m. on New Year’s Day.

One of them was a baby girl born to parents Kalei and Logan Edmonson of Palm Bay. The couple was still deciding on a name for the girl — who measured 20 inches and weighed seven pounds, 15 ounces at birth — and joked that the whole event could have been timed better.

Kalei and Logan Edmonson, both of Palm Bay, with their newborn daughter, Jan. 1, 2022. (Health First)

“We really were hoping for a New Year’s Eve baby! We were trying to get the little [tax] deductions and compensation for her being stubborn,” the couple said.

Health First officials said that their three New Year’s Day babies and their mothers are all doing fine.

About the Author:

Brandon, a UCF grad, joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021. Before joining News 6, Brandon worked at WDBO.