Triplets hit big 7-0
IT WAS a cold and frosty morning when the McConnell triplets, David, Ernest and Norman were born at the Mundubbera Hospital on July 21 back in 1944.
Their parents Cliff and May lived on a dairy farm at Glenrae, seven miles from Mundubbera where they had no power, just horses and a spring cart.
Doctor Oregan, a highly respected medical man who had served in the First World War, was the medical superintendent of the hospital at the time.
Norman’s carer, Gloria Miller, said the triplets were put in one cot with lots of rolled up newspapers around them and taken to the hospital’s kitchen where the wood stove was kept burning continually to give them warmth.
Gloria Miller Considering that the hospital had no special equipment like today, Dr Oregan and his staff did a marvellous job.
“They were tube-fed for some time, and considering that the hospital had no special equipment like today, Dr Oregan and his staff did a marvellous job,” she said.
“While the town was abuzz with the news of the first ever set of triplets being born, Cliff was unaware of the birth until 12 hours later as May had been living in town,” she said.
Sister Beryl Imhoff said the triplets were born six weeks premature weighing 3lbs 6ozs, 3lbs 8ozs and 3lbs 14ozs.
“I had to leave school at 13 at the end of scholarship to look after the triplets when they were 18 months old,” Ms Imhoff said.
“When the triplets were born the family jumped from six children to nine but eventually there were 13 – 10 boys and three girls.”
On Saturday the brothers celebrated their 70th birthday with family and friends at the Commercial Hotel at Biggenden.
Today Dave lives at Biggenden, Norman at Apple Tree Creek and Ernest at Gayndah.
Norman and Ernest, who are identical, both enjoy woodwork with some of Norman’s donated as stage decorations for the Tamworth Country Music Festival.
In early July he presented Joy McKean with a carved bust of Slim Dusty when she visited Bundaberg.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY: The McConnell triplets David (Biggenden), Ernest (Gayndah) and Norman (Apple Tree Creek) celebrated their birthday with family and friends at Biggenden on Saturday.
McConnell triplets, Norman, Ernest and David when they started school in 1950.