Barbara A. Martindale- For What It's Worth March 19, 2013
The day quadruplets were born to parents living in Caledonia was exciting and, of course, overwhelming for Donna and David Launslager. Yes, Caledonia was abuzz over the quads.
It was March 23, 1985 when three girls and a boy joined big brother, two-year-old Mike. Katie, Laura, Thomas and Sarah were the first quads to be born at McMaster Medical Centre, all by Caesarean section weighing 2.97 pounds to 4.73 pounds.
There were 21 healthcare professionals, including three obstetricians and four pediatricians, involved in the delivery.
There was no history of multiple births in either family, and there were no fertility drugs taken by Donna. An ultrasound in October indicated there would be quads. Although born a little unexpectedly, they arrived at one-minute intervals shortly after 1:30 am.
Neighbours of the Launslager's had been eagerly awaiting the births for weeks. Everyone was willing to lend a helping hand.
It took a few weeks for the babies to come home to Caledonia. In the meantime, St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church prepared for volunteer help at feeding times. Many signed up to help within the church, along with a few others. Bette Price was one who helped with feedings and baths.
"I consider that time with the babies as one of the privileges of my life," said Bette.
A year after the births, the Launslagers moved to Waterloo, but returned for a birthday party at St. Paul's Anglican Church. The family periodically made visits to Caledonia over the years. Bette Price was one of their visits. As well, she visited with the family in Waterloo. Bette had the girls stay overnight a few times too.
Bette kept in touch with the Launslager family until three or four years ago.
She said all the children attended university. The girls are lovely looking and adorable. Tommy, the smallest, was attending university too. Older brother Mike had finished university and was pursuing his career.
"At one time, Donna went to China to talk about multiple births," said Bette. "The last time I was in touch, David was retiring from his position as principal of a high school in Waterloo."
Although it doesn't seem possible, it was 27 years ago when Caledonia experienced the joy of having the first quadruplets in town.