Indy’s First Surviving Quadruplets Turn 34 Today

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indy's first quadruplets in bed

They were born in the wee morning hours of June 9, 1983 and promptly made headline news. Riley set up a special telephone number for media to get recorded updates.

The booklet was 29 pages thick. It was titled: “The Taylor Quadruplets: Information for the News Media.”

Yes. This was a big deal. A huge deal. Four babies were on the way. The hospitals – IU Health University Hospital, where the Taylor babies would be born and Riley Hospital for Children, where the quadruplets would be cared for – had been preparing for weeks.

A recovery room at University Hospital was transformed into a mini intensive care unit. A plan was crafted for the transport of the babies after their birth to the intensive care unit of Riley.

indy's first surviving quadruplets at first birthday party

Five teams, each including a physician, nurse and respiratory therapist, were formed and kept on call all those weeks.

And that booklet outlined it all, giving details on the family’s background, the pregnancy and preparations for the birth. A special telephone number was set up for recorded updates on the babies’ conditions.

Then? Well, then those babies came.

It was the wee morning hours of June 9, 1983, when the four Taylor babies arrived, believed to be the first surviving quadruplets born to an Indianapolis couple.

newspaper clipping on quadruplets birth

The babies were born 10 weeks early to Phil and Theresa Taylor. They arrived between 1:15 a.m. and 1:17 a.m., one boy and three girls in this order: David Carey, 3 pounds, 6 ounces; Mary Kathleen (Katie), 3 pounds, 1 ounce; Laura Jean, 2 pounds, 7 ounces; and Julie Maureen, 2 pounds, 12 ounces.

From the Indianapolis newspaper article that ran after their birth: “I feel relieved and happy but still very nervous,” Phil Taylor said, adding that his wife was groggy from sedation but ecstatic about the babies’ arrival. The couple also had 2-year-old daughter Lynn Marie.

A big family wasn’t a new thing for Phil Taylor, who came from a blended family with 13 children. He did say at the time that it would take some adjustment for their Eastside Indianapolis home.

“We’ve been prepared mentally for this, but we purposefully haven’t made any solid arrangements yet,” Taylor said after the babies’ births. “The first thing we’ll do is become much more imaginative in ways to stretch a dollar.”

quadruplets on a wedding day

Stretch a dollar they did. And they raised a happy, healthy family that is still very close, says Dave Taylor.

“Our mom and dad deserve a ton of praise,” he says.

Theresa and Phil Taylor are now the proud grandparents of 11 with three more on the way, including Laura’s twins. The oldest grandchild is 6. And Laura Koke just happens to be a nurse herself at Riley.

-- By Dana Benbow, Senior Journalist at IU Health.

Reach Benbow via email or on Twitter @danabenbow