An improbable twist of fate saw schoolboy Seamus Clarke celebrate his 11th birthday just hours before his dad James. Seamus' father James marks his birthday today, on February 29, a date which only comes around every four years as a leap day.
While Mr Clarke is actually 44, in 2012 he will only ever have celebrated 11 birthdays on his actual birth date as one of a select batch of leap year babies. Despite missing out on a total of 33 birthdays since 1968, he admitted being born in a leap year does have its benefits. 'I'm used to missing out on my real birthday, but being born in a leap year did have its benefits when I was at school,' he said.
'You know what children are like - especially boys. We were always giving each other birthday bumps or beats. But I usually got away with it because on February 28 I'd tell them "it's my birthday tomorrow" and then on March 1 I'd say "my birthday was yesterday".'
Seamus turned 11 hours before on February 28, something he has enjoyed reminding his father of ahead of a planned joint party. 'Seamus finds it hilarious that he will turn 11 before me,' revealed James. 'He's been telling all of his friends at school and they have a good laugh - it's a real big deal for him.'
New Jersey mom Michelle Birnbaum celebrates her real birthday for only the eighth time today.
And the guest of honor at her party will be another very special birthday girl — her 4-year-old daughter, Rose, who remarkably beat the 2 million-to-1 odds and also was born on Feb. 29.
Birnbaum, 32, insisted that as delighted as she is to finally have a built-in party partner, she never planed to create two generations of Leap Year birthdays.