8 sets of multiples to graduate from Iowa high school

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Davenport, IA (WQAD) – When you flip through the yearbook of Davenport West High School, you might start seeing double… or even triple.
The Class of 2014 has not one, not two… but eight sets of multiples.
They include: Courtney, Brittany, & Derek Geiken; Kelsey & Kylie Ehrecke; Casey & Kelsey Gaylord; Brittany & Brandon Patterson; Alexis & Anthony Lotspeich; Nathan & Taylor Clark; Melanie & Dawn Vickers; and Ellen Paige & Kellie Nelson.
“For one school, I think that’s quite a record,” says Kathy Gaylord, Mother of Casey and Kelsey who were born on February 15th, 1996, which is ironically the same day as Kelsey & Kylie Ehrecke.
On Wednesday, May 28th, 2014, all 17 students gathered together to take a group picture and share their future plans with News 8.
“We’re both going to UNI and we’re both going to be teachers,” says Melanie Vickers. “I’m doing English and she’s [Dawn’s] doing Music.”
Melanie and Dawn, who were born on July 8th, 1996, say they do everything together and are both involved in choir and theater. They plan to continue those activities in college as well as room together.
“We’re not ready to split up yet,” says Dawn. “We’re more on the side of being best friends. We don’t argue. We just do everything together.”
Both say they like being part of this unique class of seniors.
“It makes us feel less weird, because we always got questions like – ‘How’s it like to be a twin?’ but the thing is it’s normal here because a lot of people are twins,” says Dawn.
You wouldn’t know some of them are, though. Out of the eight sets, only two are identical.
“We’re very different,” says Alexis Lotspeich.
“Exact opposites,” adds Anthony Lotspeich.
The only similarity Alexis and Anthony probably have is their birthday – January 22nd, 1996. Alexis is involved in the arts, while Anthony is involved in athletics. They even differ when it comes to grades.
“I have a 4.0 GPA,” says Alexis. “I have an accumulated 4.0 as well.”
“I have no clue what mine is,” adds Anthony. “I just know I’m passing.”
Anthony has completed Scott Community College’s Auto Program and plans to become a full-time student at SCC in the fall. Meanwhile, Alexis is going away to Central College in Pella, Iowa.
Also going away to school are the triplets – Courtney, Brittany, & Derek Geiken. All three say they’ll be majoring in Engineering at Iowa State University.
“Our dad is an Engineer and we just kind of all like math,” says Brittany.
The three all look different and have different personalities, but say they all have the same sense of humor.
“Most people don’t even know we’re triplets,” says Derek. “You go to school with them for four years and they just find out now.”
“In a way, I think it would be cool if we looked alike, but I’m glad we don’t because I don’t want to be mistaken all the time,” says Brittany.
All eight sets will graduate on Sunday, June 1, 2014. Guidance Counselor and Senior Class Adviser, Stephanie Eckhardt, says they all have something else in common.
“They’ve just all been successful in their own ways,” she says. “You name it, that group has done it and they’ve all done it really well.”
“It was really fun bringing them all together today and really learning about all the diversity in the group,” Stephanie adds. “We have a couple of 4.0 GPA students and I bet putting all the sets together we would have a 3.75 GPA for all of them, so that’s exciting, too.”
“I think it’s great,” says Kathy Gaylord. “I know a lot of the sets of twins and our twins know a lot of the sets of twins and so I think it’s really great to have them all together and get pictures.”
“It’s something they’ll remember for a long time,” Gaylord said.

By Angie Sharp

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