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New Year’s celebration for some includes birth of child

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Fifth-generation San Franciscan Elijah Rudolfo Bonilla-Hill became The City’s first baby of the new year on Monday, arriving at 2:13 a.m., according to Phyllis Brown, spokeswoman for UCSF Medical Center at Parnassus.

Elijah, a healthy 6-pound 13-ounce boy, already has his first Giants one-piece, courtesy of his uncle, mom Cindy Bonilla said.

Bonilla, a buyer for Sloat Garden Center in The City and father Eric Hill, a landscaper, said Elijah’s birth, three days early, was a “great way to start the new year.” The family thought for sure another couple had delivered prior to them, but were pleasantly surprised Monday morning when they learned Elijah was the first. “He’s famous already,” Bonilla said.

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Elijah’s middle name, Rudolfo, comes from his great-grandfather on Bonilla’s side who passed away about two years ago, she said. The couple just recently moved into his family house in the Sunset and thought the name would help keep his memory alive, Bonilla said.

While ahead of other city kids, Elijah missed being the first Bay Area baby of 2007 by a mile. That honor went to Liam August Hinkey, a 9-pound 5-ounce boy born at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Santa Clara at the stroke of midnight to Sunnyvale residents Kai and Jim Hinkey.

Not content to be a milestone for the family, Elijah is also the first New Year’s baby born at UCSF in a quarter century, longtime UCSF employee Marit Taylor said.

UCSF, which specializes in high-risk deliveries, delivers about 2,000 infants a year, about one-third as many as hospitals such as Kaiser or California Pacific, Taylor said.

On the Peninsula, San Bruno mom Rima Khoury rang in the new year by delivering San Mateo County’s first baby of the year, Sally, 40 seconds after midnight, officials at Mills-Peninsula hospital in Burlingame said Monday. Born two weeks early, Sally was in good health yesterday at 6 1/2 pounds and came with a full head of hair, according to her father, Suheil Khoury.

“It’s absolutely fabulous,” Khoury said. “The nurses have been telling us about how girls, especially, like to hear the story about how they were born on the first.”

Sally’s mom, Rima, is a software engineer, while father, Suheil, owns the Blue Front Deli and Café at Haight and Ashbury streets in San Francisco.

As it turned out, the nurse in charge of Sally’s birth also shares her name. “It kind of seemed like it was meant to be,” Suheil said, pointing out the couple hadn’t settled on name when they arrived at the hospital.

ecarpenter@examiner.com



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