A Howard Beach couple welcomed the birth of their triplets just days before Father’s Day.
Catherine and Stephan Vieitez left North Shore University Hospital Friday, June 18, with their newly expanded family.
Stephan, Jr., known as Baby A, Violet Meadows (Baby B) and Austin Stephen (Baby C) were reunited with Victor Klein, MD, vice chair of OB/GYN at North Shore University Hospital following their June 15 birth.
The “over-the-moon” father is a bus maintenance worker for the MTA, where he often works into the night keeping vehicles clean and sanitized. Having a pregnant wife during the COVID-19 pandemic was especially stressful, Vieitez admitted, requiring several minutes of decontamination work when he arrived home each night, before approaching his wife.
“Being pregnant during the pandemic was certainly not easy,” Vieitez said. “We had to do everything differently, from buying baby furniture to having a baby shower. Many of the friends and relatives we would have liked to celebrate with could not come into our home. Everything we did was with the health of our babies and my wife in mind.”
His wife Catherine didn’t know that her husband had purchased a three-stone diamond ring that he planned to present to her as they left the hospital. In the excitement, he realized he had left the ring at home.
“I just want my wonderful wife to know that I have this beautiful ring waiting for her at home,” he said. “Each stone represents our babies and the love we will share for all eternity. So, when we get home, you’re gonna be iced up, baby!”
The new mother of three said that her husband had already surprised her with the quality of his love and support.
“He’s doing so much while I recuperate,” she said. “He’s changed so many diapers and helped with the feedings. He is a wonderful father already.”
Dr. Klein said the new dad’s newly discovered talents will come in handy, pointing out the findings of a research study that predicts 10,000 diaper changes for three babies in their first year of life. He also noted that while the U.S. experienced a 4% drop in births this year, the largest such decline in the past 50 years, North Shore University Hospital saw a 10% increase in the number of babies born there.
“When dealing with triplets, our goal is to have the babies growing through 32-34 weeks in utero,” Klein said. “These babies were born at 36 weeks. They’re doing beautifully, and it’s going to be a wonderful Father’s Day for this family.”