Updated 12:01 AM EDT, Wed, Sep 03, 2014

Identical Triplets Delivered at Southern California Hospital

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Babies Born on New Year's day
(Photo : REUTERS/Romeo Ranoc)

Even after having two miscarriages, a Southern California couple never gave up on the hope that they would be able to provide their 5-year-old daughter with a sibling. Miraculously, not only did the couple finally conceive and have a healthy pregnancy, but the mother gave birth to a set of identical triplets, which is an extreme rarity.

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On Jan. 13, April Dooley delivered three sons named Patrick Scott, Owen Michael and Liam Cooper Dooley, who were born in roughly 4-minute intervals at Miller Children's Hospital in Long Beach. The boys had combined weight of 14 pounds, 9 ounces, according to the Orange County Register.

The 42-year-old mother said she burst into tears when she looked at her first ultrasound and learned she was carrying carrying identical triplets, an occurence so rare that there are no statistical numbers for its frequency. "My husband said, 'Is that three?' I go, 'Three what?' My husband said, 'three babies,'" she said, reports the Associated Press.

"We were trying for one more time," April Dooley told the Register. "I had had two miscarriages. We were just trying one more time to get pregnant," she said.

The triplets arrived six weeks early, which is common with multiple births. All three boys are healthy, although Liam required surgery for intestinal malrotation. The mother said the surgeon told her the surgery went well.

Despite the rarity, this is the second time that identical triplets were born in California within several months. On Nov. 22, 2013, Abby, Brin and Laurel Hepner were at the Sutter Memorial Hospital to Hannah and Tom Hepner.

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