Interesting Facts

Remembering the miracles of the 1985 Mexico earthquake (unbelievable stories)

In 1985, after an 8.0 magnitude earthquake hit Mexico City, nearly all newborn babies survived a collapsed hospital. They are known as “Miracle Babies” for surviving 7 days without nourishment, water, warmth or human contact.

On September 19, 1985, an earthquake rocked Mexico City, killing thousands of people, but heroes and incredible survivors rose above the destruction.

Here are the accounts of a baby that was saved from the debris, a surgeon who is still in operation despite losing four fingers, and the rescue team that was established during the disaster.

Surgeon with toes for fingers

At 7:19 in the morning, Francisco Bucio and his closest friend, Angel, were plastic surgery students on the fourth floor of the General Hospital in the capital when the earthquake occurred.

“Suddenly the (eight-floor) building bent, collapsed and I was in complete darkness. I realized that my right arm was trapped and my hand was crushed. I thought ‘My career’s over,'” he said.

“I heard screams from those who were trapped close to me, and little by little they became silent,” Bucio recalled. “I spent four days like that.”

He was eventually located by his six brothers, who persisted in searching through the pile of debris while the rescuers gave up trying to find survivors. He lost his best friend.

His right thumb was fixed by American doctors, who also fitted him with toes in place of his other four fingers, giving him the ability to hold a scalpel.

Bucio, 58, is a plastic surgeon in Tijuana, a city that borders California. Positive reviews from pleased clients can be found on his website.

The ‘Topos’

When buildings collapsed, Adrian Perez was one of thousands of Mexicans who immediately volunteered to save lives.

He was interning as an engineer at an office in a neighborhood spared from the devastation that befell the rest of the city.

According to him, he hurried to the severely damaged Roma neighborhood “without thinking,” saying it “looked like a war zone.”

His first task was to remove gas tanks from a college that had been “squashed like a sandwhich.”

When he’d finished that, he’d crawled back in among the crumbling, broken walls to discover a young woman, trapped between bodies and broken objects, moaning.

The Topos have travelled the world to provide aid in a number of disasters, such as the massive earthquake that struck Nepal in April and the Asian tsunami that struck in 2004.

“I never thought about the risks. I was only part of the strength of the entire population that was helping, without regard for social class, other people who needed this help,” Perez said. He is still in tears when he thinks about the 1985 tragedy.

Miracle babies

When the hospital where Jesus Francisco Rodriguez Santamaria was born collapsed, a rod was driven into his small chest, and he was only four days old.

“My life was hanging by a thread when they rescued me. The rod made me cry and that’s how they heard me,” Rodriguez said.

But his mother ended up becoming one of the 6,000–20,000 people who passed away that day.

Rodriguez, who turned thirty on September 15, resides in the capital’s southern region, far from the area where his maternity hospital was situated and the area that was most severely damaged.

Although a dedicated fund was established for the kids, it was only operational until they reached college age.

After eighteen years of working at gas stations, Rodriguez recently started law school. Despite his limp from his injuries, he is still able to play football.

The survivor drew strength from the medallion of the Virgin Mary that was discovered in his closed, tiny fist upon his rescue, as well as the love of his adoptive aunt and uncle. No one is sure who placed it there.

Body Fat Helped Babies Survive Quake

The fact that twelve newborns survived for days beneath the debris from Mexico’s powerful earthquake before being rescued, according to pediatricians, is not shocking.

“We often underestimate the protective buffer that Mother Nature offers to newborns,” said Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center pediatrician Dr. Karl F. Schulze. “It is true that humans evolved from the wild, where conditions were not always ideal.”

According to medical professionals, extra body fat makes up 15% of the weight of a healthy newborn. This fat helps the baby get through the first few days of life, when the mother’s milk is scarce and not very nourishing.

According to Schulze, a baby can go up to a month without eating, so it’s normal for them to lose a little weight in the first few days of their lives.

But just like adults, babies also require water to survive, and the biggest threat the Mexico City babies faced was dehydration.

According to Schulze, if water is available, a baby will instinctively drink it. Schulze referenced a well-known instance of an Indian dump site child who survived for weeks by consuming runoff water that was rich in nutrients.

A baby’s metabolism also slows down during physical stress, so it can conserve water and energy by lying still and not moving. According to medical professionals, if a child has something covering their face or nose, it will wriggle free and into clear air.

Babies need a warm environment more than adults do.

Director of the neonatology division at the Montifiore Medical Center Dr. Alan R. Fleischman stated, “Babies don’t shiver like adults do, so they create body heat by burning sugar.” “We keep babies wrapped and dressed in extra clothes because they are delicate.”

The majority of the babies that had survived and were found in the city’s medical center complex were covered in blankets and kept in incubators.The first baby was discovered 55 hours after the catastrophe and the last a few days later.

Hypoglycemia Feared

As a result of running out of sugar, some of the babies discovered in Mexico might experience hypoglycemia, and others might experience brain damage, according to Dr. David A. Clark, a medical professor at the New York Medical College in Valhalla. Those discovered early, though, ought to recover swiftly, he added.

“An adult has unquestionably more advantages than a baby in a situation like this,” he stated. “Yet babies are more resilient than most people realize.”

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x