December 27, 2013 8:44:30 AM
TUPELO -- Just before Christmas, a New Albany family of four became a family of eight.
Veronica Hernandez gave birth Monday to quadruplets: two boys and two girls.
Girls Allyson Sophia and Ashley Marie and boys Alexander Ivan and Anthony Ricardo were born at 25 weeks.
"This is our Christmas present, for sure," said Veronica, 33.
Helias Hernandez, 27, is a twin himself, and has two other sets of twins in his family. But no one was expecting four babies when the couple became pregnant this summer.
Veronica Hernandez said they'd been told to expect triplets. In November, she said, doctors found another baby.
The girls weigh just over one pound each, and the boys are just over two pounds each.
Veronica Hernandez has been hospitalized at North Mississippi Medical Center Women's Hospital since the day since the day after Thanksgiving to keep the babies in the womb as long as possible and ensure they weren't born without a doctor around.
The babies were on ventilators but doing well.
They have a 16-year-old brother and a 10-year-old sister.
"I'm proud that I delivered these babies," said Dr. Leo Bautista. "And this may be the only quads that I will have in my career ... After they were delivered, they were of course premature, but they did very well after they were delivered."
Bautista said everything looks pretty good right now if the babies can make it to 34 weeks without complications.
"It's not unheard of, but it's exceedingly rare," to have quadruplets without fertility treatment, said Bautista. "It's about 1 in 750,000."
Helias Hernandez said he's happy the babies arrived safely. When they come home -- likely April if all goes well -- that's when the shock will set in, he said.
1. Cattleman's: Open for business COLUMBUS & LOWNDES COUNTY
2. Columbus remembers Jimmy Garton, a man of many titles COLUMBUS & LOWNDES COUNTY
3. Benefit for father-son crash victims this weekend COLUMBUS & LOWNDES COUNTY
4. Demonstration school seeks statewide impact STARKVILLE & OKTIBBEHA COUNTY
5. Romney speaks at MSU, still undeclared for 2016 STARKVILLE & OKTIBBEHA COUNTY