NEW BETHLEHEM – In the span of an hour-and-a-half last Wednesday, March 7, Ben Kundick Jr. of New Bethlehem added three new grandchildren when his two daughters gave birth to three children at two different area hospitals.

Nicole Bates gave birth to twins at Penn Highlands in DuBois at 5:07 and 5:08 p.m., and sister Nadia Mangiantini gave birth at 6:37 p.m. in UPMC-Seneca.

“Everybody’s healthy and the twins had to be on ventilators for a day,” said Kundick. “They were big babies — they weren’t little. Twins run on both sides of her family.”

The “crazy” Wednesday was unexpected and did not follow the plans that were in place. The two sisters were not expecting at the same time. Nadia’s due date was on March 19 and Nicole was expecting twins and they were going to take them on March 15.

“Nadia went to UPMC-Seneca on Tuesday night and they kept her and were going to induce her on Wednesday,” said Kundick, a salesman at Redbank Chevrolet. “I had off on Wednesday and went up there and while I was there, I got a call from my other daughter saying they had taken her to DuBois and she had some high blood pressure and other things and they were going to keep her there overnight and do some tests. A little later they said they would have to do an emergency C section on her.”

Some complications forced the deliveries earlier than expected.

The twins had some pretty serious breathing issues, which caused both of them to be placed on ventilators in the NIC unit at DuBois. Kundick, also an ordained minister, put the call out to some of his pastor friends, as well as friends and family members, for some major prayers to be lifted up for the twins. He believes the prayers were answered, because a day-and-a-half later both were removed from not only the ventilators, but all oxygen support as well.

Kundick was still at DuBois and welcomed the birth of a grandson, Sully Paul, born first at 5:07pm, weighing 7.2 pounds, and one minute later a twin sister, Saige Noel, who weighed 6.3 pounds.

The night of births had one more chapter with a birth at UPMC-Seneca.

Great-grandfather Ben Kundick Sr. was there at UPMC for the birth of his 22nd great-grandchild, Lillian Rose Mangiantini, 8.3 pounds and 21 inches long. Lillian’s arrival increased Ben Jr.’s number of grandchildren to an even dozen.

It was the first child for Nadia, but the twins will be greeted at home by three proud brothers: Micah, Rowan and Nolan.

The Kundick clan is competitive, and the birth of babies was no exception.

When Nadia was admitted Tuesday night and Ben Jr. received word that Nicole was also being admitted to DuBois, the race was on.

“The change prompted Nadia’s husband Gary to send a text saying, ‘Ha-ha, we win,’ except a short time later, the doctors in DuBois determined that Nicole needed to have her C-section pronto, which caused Nicole’s husband Toby to respond back, ‘Too bad, it looks like we win!’” said Ben Jr.

“In the end, it looks like everyone won with the birth of three beautiful babies. Nadia and Nicole, as well as all three babies, are doing well and all should be going home soon.”

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