The first baby born at a University of Texas Medical Branch hospital in 2018 was a boy.
Daniela Oviedo Morales and her husband, Jose Vazquez Gonzales, welcomed their second son, Joel, just after 8:30 a.m. Monday.
The couple drove to the medical branch in Galveston from their home in Pasadena at 2 a.m. Baby Joel was about a week early. His scheduled due date was on Jan. 8.
The family had left so long after midnight that they didn’t expect their child would be the first born at the hospital this year, they said.
“We thought there was another baby born already,” Oviedo Morales said through a translator. “It’s very special for us. We wanted it to be a 2018 baby.”
Baby Joel weighed 7 pounds, 2 ounces, and had no complications. The family was expected to spend Monday at the hospital before being released on Tuesday.
As is tradition, the nurses from the medical branch’s mother and baby ward gave the family a basket as a way to celebrate the first baby born at the hospital in the new year. The basket included a knitted bonnet with a sheep on it, and a jumper with the numbers “2018.”
A sign on the door of the family’s hospital proclaimed the baby a “BOI,” which stands for “Born on the Island.” It’s a title that some locals hold in genial esteem.
As of Monday afternoon, four babies had been born at the medical branch’s Galveston hospital. All of them were boys.