First baby born on American soil to join generations of Firefighters

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Guam – Malakai “Champ” Mafnas was born on New Years Day. Malakai was born at 12:19 AM weighing in at 6 pounds, 6 ounces and measuring 19 inches long. Malakai, being born on Guam, Where America’s Day Begins, is the first baby born on U.S. soil.

For the mother of three, “this was the most painful and longest labor” said Desirae Mafnas. Mafnas went into labor at 11 AM and the baby was born at 12:19 AM the next day – that’s 13 hours in labor.

Malakai “Champ” Mafnas

According to Malakai’s father, Firefighter Kyle Mafnas, Malakai means “godsend” and that’s exactly what Malakai was to his family, and the dad hopes, to this island. Kyle Mafnas is a second-generation firefighter and hopes that he and his brothers at the station, will inspire little Malakai, to follow in their footsteps. “I grew up in a station, as my dad is a firefighter. I also have a lot of family who are firefighters, its very family oriented” stated Mafnas. “To have them come by and watch that field, hopefully, they follow” added Mafnas proudly.

Both parents were thankful for the Guam Memorial Hospital staff as well as Dr. Tom Shieh. “Thank you to the GMH hospital staff. They are awesome, they do good work. Dr. Shieh, hes been here through three kids, every little thing, even if its a small thing, he answers right away, or he will come. I understand that he has a family and we are very grateful for him” stated Kyle Mafnas.

From car seats, baby formula and diapers, to cell phones, cash and gas cards, Little Malakai was showered with gifts today – totaling around $7 thousand. The “I Guam New Year Baby” is a program organized by Archway Inc. Starting in 2005, the initiative has grown thanks to the participation of local businesses.

Previous title holders of the New Year Baby, Kylie Rae Tesalona (2017) and Logan James Lynch Perez (2018) also paid it forward by joining the 27 business in showering Malakai with gifts. “Its not only about welcoming the first and newest American Born on U.S. soil, but showing Guam’s true spirit of helping, giving, and celebrating the joys of life” stated Penny Macias, of Archaway Inc.